I am proud to be acknowledged by my global clientele and peers, including many executive recruiters, as a fearless networker who takes advantage of all opportunities to expand my horizons and meet new and interesting people. I search out those who can not only bring value to me, but can bring value to my clients.
Each year I establish a networking plan to get the most out of my time, as this is precious to me. If you want to make the most of your networking time, consider how well your networking is working, and which networking skills may need improvement.
For example, poise, apparel and presentation are all major components of the initial impression you make on a new contact. So many people attend networking events unprepared, in shabby clothing, with shabby posture, and a shabby handshake. Would you even consider advancing the conversation with a shabby person?
Other people think that the goal of networking is to acquire as many business cards as you can, or to give away as many cards as you can. Wrong! By the end of 2016, do you want 150 quantifiable leads, or do you want 750 business cards stuffed in your pocket?
Networking is the time to be professional, be patient, and build conversation. Only then do you ask if you can exchange contact details and offer your business card.
Instead of charging around the room to greet as many people as you can, concentrate on making a lasting impression on those you meet, ensuring that you are remembered for many months and years to come.
Networking is a forum where you can demonstrate your professionalism, and drive respect and trust for your personality and the attributes you can bring to a future employer.
Do you want to expand your networking horizons in 2016, to build your brand and your stature? Athletes who want to win set goals. What are your networking goals?