7 tips to make your networking more professional and successful
You might be a seasoned networker or perhaps have plucked up the courage to join a networking group for the first time, but have you stopped and thought about how you should behave whilst attending a group?
Your behaviour is paramount to how you are perceived by others and you need to gain peoples trust before they consider passing on their best referrals, after all they may not be aware of your work first hand so how you act has a huge impact on whether they would consider passing potential business your way.
The most important thing to do is be professional and by that I mean:
- Don’t go along to a group and air problems and grievances – no one likes to listen to a whinger
- Don’t get to a meeting late, this makes you look unprofessional from the get go
- Don’t take a phone call or respond to emails or text messages whilst someone else is talking – give them your undivided attention so you can really listen to what they have to say so you can understand the types of people they would like to receive referrals to – after all networking works both ways, it’s about give and take
- Make sure your presentation is planned and well thought through – don’t wing it. This is your chance to impress people and show them what you do without directly selling to them. You need to be teaching them about what you offer so they understand how to refer you to others.
- When you are given referrals make sure you follow up, don’t just leave them festering away, this could be your chance to obtain business.
- Be organised and calm in your approach, you then won’t feel flustered and stressed which can show.
- Talk to the organiser of the event – they know everyone.
So think carefully about your actions before, during and after a networking group session, after all the point of networking successfully is to get referrals!