As an entrepreneur or a startup, you know benefits of networking. It gives you an amazing chance to spread the word about your project, and to meet potential buyers, suppliers, or just very helpful and skillful people.
But most of networkers turn these events into a 1 way communication: they speak about themselves and their company, and don’t care or even listen when someone else is speaking. In that case, benefits of networking are greatly reduced.
The initial principle of the networking is to share and to learn. So, if everybody’s goals are to promote themselves and to come back home with a new customers, it is highly probable that it won’t happen.
3 tips to greatly improve your networking efficiency
- Active listening: First of all, listen the person in front of you, don’t just hear him thinking at who you will meet next at the same time. Be careful of what he says and ask him relevant questions. He will feel valuable, and you will gain his respect and attention.
- Provide helpful resources: If you want others to give to you, then you have to give them first. Why should he send you the address of a contact of him otherwise? Be smart and do the first step. You may don’t know a potential customer for him, but you can probably give him helpful resources: a Meetup which might interest him, a website about its field of activity, a contact of you who might help him to solve is supply issues… If you are truly considering him and helpful, he will be way more disposed to help you back in the future.
- Follow-up: Most of networkers say that they will contact you back, but in reality, how many of them did you hear from after the event? Probably very few. Once again, be smarter than most of networkers. The next day, force you to send a quick but customized email to every person you met. Say that you were glad to meet him and to learn more about his field of activity, and that you remain available for him if he needs you.
Imagine if someone would do these things for you, won’t you be ready to help him back in return? So, from now and for future networking events, pay close attention and be helpful to your interlocutor instead of being a bad salesmen without consideration for anybody.
Now, try these tips by yourself and experience their benefits.
If you want to become the ultimate networker, I also advice you to have a look at the website: http://startnetworkingtoday.com/. It provide very interesting content about networking and professional relationships.
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