By: Tracy Jackson Image by: Bent Tuba Studio
Oh be joyful, January is almost here? That may scare some because there’s a lot to do between now and the first of the year, but it also means the Alt Summit is near. So, in preparation for the Conference, let’s talk about networking. Just because you blog behind a screen doesn’t mean you can remain invisible. To grow your business, you will need to network like a ninja. Here are some ideas that should help:
Consider what you want to Achieve
If you are serious about networking, it’s wise to ask yourself prior to an event who do I want to meet and why? Pre-planning may seem contrived, but you will accomplish more if you set networking goals. Goal setting may be as basic as establishing the number of contacts you want to make.
Be Fearless and Confident
Shrinking violets don’t network well. To quote Sara Bareilles, “I just wanna see you be brave.” You have to be willing to approach high-profile people who have achieved great things. Of course, you need to exude confidence when you approach people—confidence is one of the most alluring traits you can exhibit. You’ll make an impression if you confidently go where most savvy networkers go!
Listen and Learn
Sometimes it’s easy to underestimate the power of listening. Good listeners set themselves apart from most folks, so listen long if you have to; it will give you insight into people and reveal what they value. Listening will help you learn how to add and extract value from your relationship genuinely.
Build Relationships via Genuine Conversation
Networking is all about relationships. Quality relationships usually stem, in part, from quality conversations. You need to communicate well to be a networker extraordinaire. Avoid boring, idle chatter. Ask questions. Have something to say—know your stuff. Be interesting. Remember, conversations don’t have to revolve around your professional life. Personal details can help lighten the mood; they also help get people talking. Share something memorable so your conversation will have staying power.
Super Networkers provide immediate value to a new connection. What does this mean exactly? That the moment you identify a way to assist someone, you take immediate action. It may be as small as introducing a new contact to one of your connections. It goes without saying that if you tell a new contact that you’ll do something, you should always follow through with your promises.
This post was written and sponsored by atly.