Referral networking works
2019-12-20 11:22:15 • Denise Pitot
"How to start a conversation at a networking event You walk into a room filled with strangers….. What now? Fight the urge to hand out 100 business cards. I always aim to be at networking events early. The reason for this is that I find it more comfortable to watch people entering the room, than walking in on a room full of people. I can watch them approach; hear them introduce themselves at the registration. I am then in a great position to know who to introduce myself to first. Wearing your name tag upside down, or wearing something eye catching/ unusual (like a hat) may be a good conversation starter if you would like others to approach you. When you approach someone new, ask them about themselves. People are comfortable talking about themselves. If you can get them to talk first, it gives you the opportunity to be selective about what you share about your company. You don't want to sell to them, but you do want to ensure that what you say to them piques their attention. You then want to ensure that you are memorable…that upside down name tag or hat comes in handy here. Perhaps it is part of your elevator pitch that has them intrigued to find out more about you. Ideally, you want them to: Remember you and; Want to want to meet with you again outside of the network event, when you both have more time to understand each other's business. If you walk away from the meeting with 5 business cards, you have done better than walking into the room and handing out 100. Willy nilly handing out of business cards is worthless. A quality contact could be worth gold. "