If you are a business owner or an entrepreneur, networking is an essential part of growing your business. Even if you feel shy or awkward, the best way to get things happening for you and your brand is by connecting with other people. It could be on a local level at a Chamber breakfast, or it could be a global online marketing conference. Here are some simple things to keep in mind to make the most out of your next networking experience – even if you’re an introvert.
1. You are the product and the brand
Update your LinkedIn profile. Dress with confidence. Make it easy for people to relate to you and your business. Your delivery should be as polished and professional as your online version.
2. Set an objective: what would you like to achieve at this event?
How many people would you like to talk to? How many new contacts would you like to create? This is not about selling your product, this is about connecting with people and starting a professional relationship with them.
3. Don’t spend all your time with your colleagues or friends
Sure, use them for confidence but make sure you spread your wings. Choose who you would like to meet before the event if there is an attendance sheet. Make eye contact and introduce yourself. Be easy to talk to. Listen to people.
4. Have a few open questions handy
What brought you to this event? How did you hear about it? How do you find working for your company? If they are not a good match for you, refer them to others who you might know.
5. Set a time to follow up
Get in touch with your newly formed contacts in the next day or two and remind them of what your business is all about.
Networking is about building long-term relationships as well as a good reputation over time. It involves meeting and getting to know people who you can assist, and who can potentially help you in return. It doesn’t have to be all formal and business-like. Enjoy!
At The Generator you can participate in the following networking opportunities:
- Startup Bundy Open Coffee
- Lunch and Learn
- Open Coworking Days
- Take a Day Pass or a membership and work from our space in Bundaberg or Gympie!