Effective Networking Events and Tips

by | Mar 21, 2024

ACBC image of a business lady meeting and giving an employee a business card at a networking event

Effective Networking Events and Tips

ACBC image of a person's hand holding a pen and writing down a strategy plan

So…you have decided to attend several networking functions in the coming weeks and months, but don’t know what you should do while at them. Don’t worry, it sometimes takes a bit of time to put together a strategy that positions you where you have to be to start making contact with potential business associates. The following tips should help you with that.

Tip #1 – Prepare Yourself

Whether you are hosting or attending a networking event, you need to plan your day. This means having all the material necessary to effectively get your message across concerning your business and gathering the information you receive while at the event.

 

Tip #2 – Have A Goal In Mind

Why are you going to the networking event? What do you hope to gain? To be successful in your networking attempts, you need to have a clear target in mind and focus solely on that. How many people do you intend to make contact with? All of these are manageable goals.

 

Tip #3 – Relax Your Agenda

Although you should set a target to achieve while attending a networking event, you are not there to sell your products or services. You are there to cultivate professional relationships. This should result from meeting valuable contacts as opposed to potential customers.

 

Tip #4 – Be A Good Participant

To make an impact and score those contacts, you have to get into the middle of the action. Don’t sit in a corner by yourself and don’t avoid anyone. If you see someone alone, join them and strike up a conversation. Work the room over and over again to see everyone possible.

 

Tip #5 – Talk, But Also Listen

Networking is a two-way street. You have to get out there and talk. However, it is equally important to listen. It is through the listening part that you will learn whether or not someone you are talking to is a good fit for your goals. Not every contact will be right for you.

Tip #6 – Refer People To Other Contacts

Here’s an add-on from the listening part. If a contact you are in conversation with does not sound like a good match for your goals, and you know someone who could be, make a referral. You could even introduce the two people if both are nearby. They will remember that.

 

Tip #7 – Collect A Pair Of Business Cards

Business cards are still a standard contact form handed out at networking events. When you are collecting them to build contacts, ask for two. Here’s why: one of them is for you and the second one is for you to share with someone you know who may be a good contact for this person.

 

Tip #8 – Manage Your Time

Keeping track of time at networking events will force you to focus on reaching your goals. If you are at a lunch seminar, remember to use the free time over a meal before the start of the workshop effectively. Don’t network during a presentation or guest speaker.

 

Tip #9 – Write It Down

Notes will help you keep details straight long after the networking event has ended. Jot down small details of each conversation you are having while they happen or soon after while the information is still clear in your mind. This will make following up with contacts easier.

ACBC image of a networking event, with many business men and women, talking and having wine

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Action Coach Business Coaching is your local business coaching service in Brisbane. They can help you reach your business goals with a business plan that will guide you. For more information on this and networking tips, call ACBC today.

Conclusion

Networking is probably one of the best ways to establish solid professional business relationships. However, as easy as it may sound, it takes a fair deal of effort and planning to actually execute. You need a plan that will carry you through a networking event that keeps you focused on your goals. It takes reaching out and making contact, listening, learning, and paying attention. Even if you meet contacts that are not a good fit for you, make referrals to those who may benefit from the business contact. Be a good participant and soon you will find that those relationships will build with each event you attend. You just have to get out there and do it.