Learning to talk with people can be difficult, but these tips will help you avoid awkward situations. With the right skills and knowledge of social cues, networking becomes much less daunting.
Networking can be awkward. Here are 9 tips that will make it less so. Read more in detail here: how to network.
Do you know what I despise? Networking. And I’m quite sure I’m not the only one who feels this way. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of 9 networking techniques to help you feel more at ease.
I find networking to be unnatural and unpleasant. And every time I do it, I’m transported back to middle school, when I was attempting to make friends. Which isn’t exactly how I want to feel.
The good news is that networking doesn’t have to be shady or strange. I prefer to look of networking as a way to broaden my social circle, with the additional benefit of perhaps forming profitable relationships and career chances! So take a deep breath, let go of the stress, and dominate the networking game.
1. Be your authentic self
If you just remember one thing from these networking suggestions, let it be to be yourself and know that you’ve got this. Every other suggestion revolves on this. People can sense when you’re nervous or apprehensive, which might make you seem distant. So take a big breath and remember that the greatest thing you can do is to be yourself.
2. Be prepared at all times
A lot of people think of networking as this big cocktail party that people go to on purpose. While this may occur once in a while, the fact is that networking may occur at any time. I’m not suggesting you carry a copy of your CV with you at all times since that would be embarrassing, but being open to conversing at any time may help you broaden your network significantly.
Take some time right now to consider how you want to be seen. Do you want to be gregarious and effervescent, quiet and contemplative, or somewhere in the middle? Do you want to be known for your business acumen or your interpersonal abilities? In any case, always be prepared to create a good first impression!
3. Prepare your elevator pitch
While you don’t want to sound like a robot, practice makes perfect, and having your shpeel ready to go will assist. Networking can be stressful, and the pressure of establishing the proper connections and creating a good first impression may be overwhelming. So relieve some of the strain by completing your homework so you don’t freeze or blabber (I know I do when I’m worried). Try describing what you do to yourself in front of a mirror, as stupid as it seems, to iron out any kinks before you’re in a scenario where it counts. It is quite beneficial!
4. Begin with a grin
I believe we can all agree that a simple grin can make a big difference. Both ways are possible. Consider a period when you were frightened or uncomfortable, and how a pleasant grin helped you feel better. Giving a pleasant grin, on the other hand, might assist to relax you. Remind yourself of all your outstanding abilities and give yourself a positive grin. You’ll not only feel terrific, but you’ll also encourage people to approach you and share your warmth.
5. Don’t Be Afraid to Make Yourself Visible.
Consider networking as a kind of dating. But, in reality. You must sometimes take the initiative or, at the very least, meet the other person halfway. Don’t be frightened if things doesn’t go exactly as planned or if you don’t get precisely what you want, and remember that it’s better to try than not to attempt at all!
6. Put on your best outfit (within reason)
This networking suggestion has undoubtedly been given to you a million times, and we should appreciate it…but only within reason. Unfortunately, people do judge books by their covers, and it only takes someone 10 seconds to evaluate you. I’m not suggesting you dress in a blazer all the time, but be careful of how you portray yourself in a manner that truly reflects who you are. Plus, feeling comfortable in your clothes might help you get in the correct frame of mind and give you an extra push.
7. Make a personal connection
Someone like to collaborate with people they enjoy! Working with pals is so much more enjoyable. So, outside of the professional/working sphere, be yourself and attempt to establish common ground. If someone is sporting a lovely top, remark “I adore your top!” as stupid as it sounds. Find something outside of business where you can connect, and the networking will take care of itself.
8. Accept new opportunities with open arms.
Don’t be scared to go outside of your comfort zone and take a chance. It’s simple to cocoon oneself in a comfortable haven, but the real fun begins once you step outside of it. Play to your strengths and understand that taking a chance, chasing your goals, and going for it is what will propel you to the next level.
9. Keep in touch
You’ve already completed the difficult part! Why not send a thank you card, an email, or a text message to cement your relationship? This is one of the most powerful networking strategies I’ve come across. It’s considerate, requires little work, and strengthens your bond with the other person so that it lasts longer than the initial encounter.