We’ve all been there, haven’t we? The awkward walking into a networking event, unprepared, everyone’s already talking and found “a group” and you just have to awkwardly find a group to join onto.
If you haven’t been in that scenario, you are extremely lucky.
When you’re in business, networking is crucial to building relationships. However, it’s a bit like marmite. Some of us love it, some hate it. It comes naturally to some, to others it doesn’t.
If you’ve ever been in the awkward networking scenario, you may have very quickly created a negative assumption.
What can you do to avoid those awkward in person networking scenarios from taking place?
1. Don’t bulldoze your way into a conversation, be polite but yourself.
2. Have some relevant conversation starters ready to go for when you start chatting to someone new. This will avoid any awkward, what can I ask.
3. Come with a clear goal in mind. We recommend you don’t go to just sell. Build relationships, get to know people, it’ll be much more beneficial to yourself.
4. Ask people questions about themselves – get them talking about them and their business.
5. Always exit a conversation gracefully and politely. Don’t leave a bad taste in someone’s mouth because they will remember it.
6. Even if you don’t feel comfortable, tell your body you’re comfortable as it will rub off on the other person otherwise. Think comfortable body language.
We understand that some of these are easier said than done. It all becomes easier with practise and the more often you do it, the more comfortable you’ll feel.
Check out our upcoming B2B Expos and use them to practise your networking. Network, connect and learn with friendly, like-minded business professionals.