Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll know that networking events are a great opportunity to meet professionals in your industry. Why is this important you may ask?
- It opens doors to new employment opportunities
- It’s an opportunity to exchange and broaden your ideas and opinions
- It boosts your self esteem
- It makes you more visible – and more resourceful!
Here are five tips to get the most out of your next networking event:
Research the event you’re attending so that you’re familiar with the subject matter, the speakers and, if possible, the other delegates attending. Have some conversation starters and industry-related talking points up your sleeve. Rehearse your ‘elevator pitch’ to tell people who you are, what you’re experienced in, what you’re working on now, and where you’re interested in going.
Set yourself a target for the event, such as talking to 10 people, then manage your time so that you can achieve that goal. You don’t need to close deals at an event; it’s all about building relationships, so focus on making connections rather than sales.
Be polite. Listen to others attentively and don’t just talk about yourself. Be brave and mingle. If you see someone who’s isolated, go and say hello.
Be a referrer
Don’t focus solely on what others can do for you – think of ways you can give back and contribute to a community of likeminded professionals. If the person you’re talking to isn’t relevant to your work but you know someone else who could benefit, introduce them.
Straight after an event, make notes on everyone you met and what you talked about. Then cement that relationship via a quick email or a LinkedIn invitation a day or two after the event. Consult your notes so that you can reference specifics about your discussions.
Our team at Ironbark Marketing pride ourselves in getting to know our community and have multiple connections from differing industries – let us hook you up; just drop us a line here.