Effective Networking – How to win at the business dating game

effective networkingLast month Sharon Connolly gave us some tips on developing executive presence. this month she talks about another essential part of your leadership toolkit,  effective networking.

Effective Networking

Very often its not what you know but who you know that will get you your next opportunity. Building and nurturing relationships both inside and outside of your organization is essential if you want to grow your career. As a leader Not only should be networking yourself but you should also encourage you team to get out there networking too.

There is much more to effective networking than having a glass of wine and a chat it needs to be strategically planned. Who do you need to meet? Where do you go to meet them, on and offline and how are you going to stay in touch?

We asked Sharon for her top tips on effective networking;

  • Before going to an event rehearse your introductions. Be clear on how you will introduce yourself, differentiate yourself and be memorable.
  • Always have plenty of business cards in an accessible pocket
  • You have two ears and one mouth, use them in that ratio – listen and be interested in people – they’ll think you are charming
  • Introduce yourself with a firm handshake and a warm genuine smile
  • Adopt a host mentality. Act like its your event and graciously look after and connect other networkers
  • Dress memorably when networking. Wear brighter colours for impact. Don’t get lost in sea of corporate white shirts.
  • Have a follow up plan, connect on linked in? Subscribe to newsletter, follow on twitter -arrange to meet at another event.

These are some ideas but your networking will only pay dividends if you keep in touch.

Book a power lunch session with Sharon through SLI and get your team effectively networking.

Sharon Connollys book, effective networking – how to win at the business dating game is available in book shops and Amazon now, published by Marshall cavendish

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