“Oh Hi! I’m Sylvie. What a great opening speech that was. I gather you’re running the digital media break-out session later today? I also work in Marketing…I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on recent search engine changes – I understand that’s your specialty. Here's my contact info, by the way…”
This would be the "better me" at a business event. More like the "outside of work me." The one who is, in actuality, happy to chat with a total stranger. The one who can start up a conversation in a foreign country, is able to strike a chord with anyone, make a friend or make a group of friends.
Strange then, that this word conjures up such dread….networking. <Insert evil laughter>
What’s more, I love being presented new ideas and alternate perspectives. Send me to a conference or all-day event and I’ll happily soak in new knowledge and give my full attention. But I’ll admit that come time for the break-out session, meet-up and the much-to-be-feared social mixer I suddenly have an emergency email to attend to, which means stepping away. Far, far away.
The truth is that networking is an important skill to have especially if you’re starting a business or already running one. The old adage “it’s not what you know, but who you know” is indisputable. Whether you’re hiring, looking to be hired, in search of advice or offering it, networking is one of the most important skills that you could learn in order to make your business a success story. And thanks to social media, networking has never been easier.
Here then are 4 articles to get you thinking about networking in a whole new light:
Superconnectors take networking to a professional level, with an altruistic mandate to help us mere mortals unlock the value of their own social connections. Best of all, you don’t need to become a Superconnector. You just need to know one.
A sequel to his first article “The Rise of the Superconnector”, Shane Snow goes on to introduce 5 main styles and 15 Superconnectors who do it right or even make a living doing it.
Jeff Haden gets the “How To” low-down from Diana Kucer, Director of Global Product Marketing for LinkedIn. And given her position at the world's foremost online business network, she should know.
- And now for something completely different: How not to network:
There you have it. Now you'll be a networking superstar! Well maybe a little practice is needed, but I'm using these tips to work at it and make the "outside of work me" shine through at business events.
Do you have your own tip on how to network better? Tell us in the comments below.