Link News 11

Passion to Profit Tips: What do I say at a Networking Event?

what-do-I-say-red-largeNetworking can be a daunting task especially if you are an introvert.  But that is no excuse to abandon the exercise.  I believe that all behaviors of success can be learnt if one is willing.  Introverts make better networkers by the way, because they listen better.  Only problem is they are so stuck in thinking they are introverts and how much they hate talking to strangers.

Well, last week we looked at the first critical stage of networking which is preparation.  After preparation, you need to step out and go to an event, right? Plan to attend early so that you do not have to apologize for being late when you are introducing yourself.  It is also polite to keep time.  So give yourself ample time to get there. Another benefit for arriving early is that you can get to connect with the other early birds.

Act like the host and not the guest.  The people sitting alone on their phones are also not fond of speaking to people or are shy.  Approach them with a smile and extended hand, that has a way of breaking the ice.  Focus on the other person by asking questions (not like you are in a court of law) but in a conversational manner.  Appropriate questions to ask include – What is your name? What do you do? What motivated you to choose that line of work? How long have you been on that job? How did you hear about this event? Is it your first time? These topics normally can create conversation. Stay away from religion, politics, family, sports (incase you are on opposing teams)  It is ok to move from one person to another as long as you do it politely. If you are shy, it is good to give yourself a target of how many people you must connect with before you settle down, otherwise the little voice in your head will torment you all evening.  When you have a clear purpose and plan of how to achieve it, you mind gets busy at work.

Exchange business cards after striking a rapport with someone and establishing commonality.  You do not have to give everyone your business card, please save the trees!

Plan to stay to the end of the event. If food is served, have consideration for the other guests. Have you been to events and seen people pile up their plates yet they are among the first on the line with no consideration at all for other participants.  Please do not be that person. Ideally stay off alcohol so that you maintain a clear head.

Then comes my favorite part…When everyone is asked to introduce themselves.  The meeting moderator will normally say something like “…now we would like to know who is here with us, please tell us briefly, your name and what you do” Notice it is “what you do” not what you DID! So why do people spend precious minutes telling us about their past? Remember you are to be brief. Focus on what you do! Say both your names, the name of your company and ideally what you do covering your target audience and solution you provide.  My standard response to this questions is “I run a company called PassionProfit where we equipping aspiring and existing entrepreneurs with skills and tools to create, manage and grow successful and sustainable world class organizations” When you look for everyone or anyone you will get no one.

Let’s catch up next week when I will share on what you need to do after the event.  If you are looking for a place to network and grow your business, visit our website and go to the Profit Network tab.

Link News 5

Passion To Profit Tips : 4 Critical Stages of NETWORKING

PP GumzoIf you are in business and you think that networking is overrated then I beg you to think again.  Granted there are some networking experiences that leave a lot to be desired, but that doesn’t mean that you ditch the activity altogether.


I am sure you have heard people say, “people do business with people they know” or that “most of my new business has been through word of mouth”.  Well, studies show that 97% of new business comes from referrals or what is commonly known as word of mouth.  And what better way to generate a steady stream of word of mouth than through effective networking strategies?



Well to enjoy the fruit of networking  you need to engage in the ‘work’ of networking or the appropriate activities that will deliver the results you desire – more word of mouth!  I have observed 4 critical stages of networking and I will share one every week over the next weeks.

1.  Stage 1 – Pre-Event – Before you go to the event, you need to pay attention to a number of things – what’s your motivation or purpose for attending the event, who will be at the event and what is the best dress code.  Many people attend events based on the cost of the event or on the key note speaker.  Of course, its a good idea to listen to a speaker you believe in and trust.  But what if you have heard that speaker before? Is that reason enough not to attend the event? Remember the purpose of networking is to cultivate relationships for mutual exchange. So your purpose for networking should be the key factor in determining which event you should attend.

If you are looking for business owners ask the event planner who is the target audience.

Dress appropriately because people address you the way you are dressed.  Please do not tell me “do not judge a book by its cover” because you are not a book.  You are a living breathing human being who can think, and make appropriate dress code choices.  Finally, you have heard it said, cheap is expensive.  Going to an even simply because it is “pocket friendly” may not mean that it will be “business friendly”. Let the purpose of your networking determine the event you invest your time and treasure in.

Next week I will share the next stage. Share your thoughts and questions.

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