Networking definition: forming business connections and contacts through informal social meetings. In this day and age of 24/7 online-always-on technology, are you networking face to face with others? How often do you get out and about for real, live interchange and exchange? Here are 9 tips for networking success:
- Never forget a name and a face. How many times have you been in a situation where you’ve just introduced yourself to someone, and seconds later, you’ve forgotten their name? According to Dale Carnegie in his book How to Win Friends and Influence People, he says: “Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.” And whether that be in person, or adding it to your tweet or comment, the power of a name can’t be overstated.
- Never let ‘em see you sweat. Michelle Quillin from New England Multimedia said: “Publicly, a business owner needs to be the picture of confidence no matter what is going on behind the scenes. A confident leader inspires trust and calms the fears and anxieties of both customers and employees.” The same could be said at networking events. An air of confidence is exuded by a firm (non-sweaty) handshake, an ability to meet the other person’s eyes, an “open” posture and a comfort in one’s own presence. In Shakirah Dawud’s words, an ability to look and behave in a “natural” way; uncontrived, with a strong sense of self and purpose. Barbara Klein also said being Natural: “acting this way and being true to yourself” is a key to success.
- Lori Gosselin suggests that we “just play nice: be nice, think nice thoughts. Nice people don’t finish last. They make everyone happy they joined the race in the first place.”
- Name-dropping was mentioned by Rebekah Bowen as a naive tactic to “win friends and influence people”.
- Being nebulous, a word suggested by Bill Dorman will get you NOwhere. A confused, hazy, vague presentation of yourself and your words does not leave a good impression.
- Jack Steiner always challenges me with the words he submits, and this week was no different as he suggested Neoterism (I thought it might be a form of terrorism i.e. him terrorizing me with words I don’t know:), but in fact, it’s the introduction of new things, especially words. And I do think you can “terrorize” someone with new words and vocabulary in a social setting. What I like about Jack is that he always helps me out by defining his words, either literally or in context. But people who sprinkle ten-dollar words throughout their talk (often OUT of context), believing it will make them look smart, well…that’s often the time to head to the punch bowl for a much needed break:)
- Nuance was noted by both Melody Fletcher and Erin Feldman and it’s often the nuances, or subtleties that are in our facial expression, body language, or tone of voice that speak louder than the words we’re speaking. We’re well advised to realize that those subtle messages might not be so subtle in the eyes of the beholder.
- Claudia Anderson‘s word Nascent speaks to that very first encounter, where a potential relationship might start to grow and develop. And since a first impression is made in the first ten seconds, and ninety percent of that is visual, the nascent interaction has huge potential: good, bad or indifferent.
- Deonne Higgs’ word was Never, as in Never Give Up and Never Say Never. he also said: “another of my faves of late is “NEW”… I’ve managed to get a new outlook on life, by adopting a new perception and mindset, and this has opened up new opportunities and new friendships for me. How Rocking is that?!”
What other Networking Tips can you share here? Bring ‘em on!