Networking is an art. Getting your foot on the door and trying to start a conversation doesn’t come natural to everyone, especially when there is a constant thought pounding in your mind. Am I going to be rejected? What most of the people don’t realize is that in a business environment the other person you are trying to connect with is also looking for a beneficial outcome, so there is no reason to be afraid. Here are some tips that would help you build your network and smooth the struggle:
Take the lead! Go out there and introduce yourself. Making the first move and coming out of your comfort zone can be in fact a good thing. When you are in an event, it is fine to approach people. Just remember, first try to relate on a personal level before getting into the business talk. Showing your personality and trying to find common personal interests has the power to build better business relationships and provide closer professional connections.
Show your interest
Ask questions and listen. You can get surprised on how much people is willing to help you and share their knowledge when you express genuine interest. Also, be prepared! Do your research before attending a networking event. Look for who’s attending and try to find some common ground with the people you are interested in approaching. By doing so, it would help you to connect beyond the strictly professional, consequently helping you build a genuine personal relationship that would lay the foundation for future business.
Keep in contact
Don’t just go to an event, exchange business cards and try to force a conversation without even caring to know about the other person. This will only end up with superficial connections you won’t probably contact later. Every time you approach someone try to create something substantial that would lead to future conversations. Keep in mind, success is based on who you know and what can you bring to the table. Opportunity is everywhere! Take advantage of every situation, you never know who will help you move forward in your career. Organize your contacts by groups and remember to follow up later. Benbo is a great App that would help you not only create your own e-business card, but will serve as a tool to help you build you’re your long lasting network.