Top 3 Tips for Networking

April 13, 2015 | Hamilton, ON
Contributed by Linda Kern, Sales Trainer, Coach & Accountability Partner

linda-kernNetworking is an essential tool in business to grow your contacts for future job or business opportunities. Here are the best tips to keep in mind as you’re out there meeting new people at various events.

1. Develop relationships

The first important thing to know is that you’re not at a networking event to sell anything – be it yourself or a product. You are there to begin to develop relationships with the people you meet so that, as they get to know you, they will feel comfortable referring you to people in their network or helping you in some way.

2. Have meaningful conversations

You’ll never be able to meet everybody, so set a goal to have meaningful conversations with 2 or 3 people per event. Don’t float from one person to the next; stay and engage with the people you meet, especially if you find you have a connection with them in some way.

3. Be genuinely curious

When you meet new people ask them a little bit about themselves. Start with something like: “What brings you to this event?” or “What were you hoping to learn at this event?” or “What do you do at your company?” Then follow up with “How have your found the event so far?” or “How long have you been at your company” or “Who is one of your company’s clients that I might know?” Be genuinely curious about the person and his/her business and your questions will flow. Make sure that you ask before you tell!

Then remember to follow-up on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc. Schedule a time to have coffee or lunch with those people you really connect with personally or feel you may be able to help or can help you.

It takes a lot of time and effort before you see a return on the energy you put out – so keep going to events. It’s a wonderful way to meet like-minded people in your community, some who may become your new friends!

Excerpted from Linda Kern’s blog.

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