‘It’s not what you know, it’s who you know’. This famous saying is popular for a reason. Having good professional contacts can help you a lot throughout your career. Networking events are a great way to make useful contacts. Here are our favourite tips as to how to make those connections.
- Be genuine. Don’t blurt out your entire working history, take an interest in the other persons job and get to know them. A personal connection can go a long way; you never know what opportunistic may arise.
- Smile. Smiling makes you more approachable in the first place for people to come and talk to you. You want to make a positive impression on these people, so a happy atmosphere is always good and will help them remember you.
- Show you are listening. Nobody likes people that only talk about themselves. Plus, you don’t want to be that person that kills an already active conversation by chiming in with something new and completely irrelevant. Listen to the conversation and add to it to show that you were listening.
- Don’t sell yourself. You want to form genuine connections with people; this way you will be more likely to gain new opportunities. Connections can’t be made from a person trying to sell themselves, so share instead of sell.
- Do research. It will be helpful for you to do research beforehand and see which connections are appropriate for you to make. If you are likely to get nervous, come prepared with questions that will help you get to know people.
- Be interested. Don’t go in and only talk about yourself, ask questions to get to know other people. Additionally, don’t have an attitude that you only want to help yourself. Think about how you can help other peoples businesses out as well.
- Bring a friend. It can be useful to come with a friend as long as you ensure you don’t spend your entire time only talking to them. Bringing a friend means that you can talk each other up without seeing arrogant.
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