there. But, how does “networking” work when you are staring at 600 people that you don’t know?
Here are six steps to networking:
- Have an “opening line” prepared before you begin the networking process. For example, have a question in mind for which you are in search of an answer. It can be a problem you are having at work or your search for a good seafood restaurant.
- Look at each of those 600 people as individuals, not as a massive crowd staring at or ignoring you. Read
the body language and select the people who seem open to conversation.
- (If you are shy) Start up a conversation in the coffee line. Most people there are very focused on the task of filling their cup and willing to share comments about the morning or the upcoming session.
- Limit your networking time with each person to several minutes. It’s OK to say, “I really thank you for talking with me. I’m going to go now because I’d like to meet several people this afternoon during the
- If you even think there could be a good connection for you with the person you meet, ask if you can get the person’s card. BE SURE to have your business card ready to trade.
- Follow up with an email to each person you’d like to stay in touch with. YOU NEVER KNOW...
Questions to Ponder:
- What’s the worst thing that can happen to you if you go up to a person that you do not know at a conference, read his/her name badge, and introduce yourself? Enough said? Of course not….
- What’s the BEST thing that can happen to you if you go up to a person that you do not know at a conference, read his/her name badge, and introduce yourself?