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2020 Networking Secrets Part Two

When it comes to making the most of your 2020 networking experience, you can never have too much help. So, I’m back with Part II of my Networking secrets, just in time to follow up and follow through on your new leads!

Standing Out While Fitting In

As a professional speaker and television commentator, it’s important to have a few glitzy ensembles ready before I take the stage. But let me tell you, your appearance is just as important on the networking stage as well. When networking and creating new relationships, it’s important to present yourself appropriately, both physically and emotionally! Emotionally, don’t be the fun sponge. Either put on your best ‘mask’ or enjoy the mood you are in! Physically, you need to know attire before you arrive. Ask yourself, “Is it really the short black cocktail dress or is it the business suit?” If you aren’t sure, do a little social media creeping. You should be able to get a sense of the formality, based on the photos others have posted from previous year’s events.

Goal!

Football fields aren’t the only thing with goal posts during the holiday season! The same way we take a grocery list to the supermarket, we all have an agenda for the events we attend. Before you walk in, set an attainable goal for the evening, and don’t leave before it’s accomplished. Meeting 1 new person? Having a conversation with 2 specific people that you’ve researched and want/need to meet? Giving out at least 5 business cards? No goal is too small or too big; it’s yours and it can be anything! And remember, you may not get this exact same opportunity again, so carpe diem, my friend. Seize the day.

Did you know: If you write down your goals, you are statistically more likely to achieve them.

Name Game

According to research, 90% of people surveyed say they feel more respected and motivated when someone remembers their name, and four out of five people say remembering names is more important than a good handshake!  Unfortunately, remembering names is much easier said than done. So what’s the secret? Simple – association and repetition. When you hear the person’s name for the first time, concentrate hard to associate that name with an image it brings to mind. If it doesn’t create an image, try associating it with something relevant to the circumstances of your meeting; like “Black Suit” Jack. It may seem silly at the time, but the effort involved in creating such a specific nickname will make it much easier to recall in the future. Then, repeat the name several times, either to yourself, or preferably, in conversation with that individual.

You can also check out the app “Namerick” for more help!

Pack your Pocket

Never show up to the party unprepared. Take a moment to arm yourself with the essentials before you walk out of the door.

  • Business Cards
  • Mints
  • Cash and Credit
  • Invitation (can be on your phone)
  • Phone (not to answer it, but to have if you need to call ahead/find location)
  • Host gift (if appropriate)

The Gift that Keeps on Giving

Sometimes the occasion calls for a host/hostess gift. If that’s the case, find something that positively fits their personality – avoid anything obviously disposable or re-giftable. To steer your shopping straight, keep your budget small (nothing extravagant, just thoughtful), and do your research to find something they’ll not only be interested in, but impressed by!

If you’re a really good shopper, this gift will end up on their desk or in their home; this is the gold medal of host-gifting. How many other guests will end up that close to the host at the end of the night? This will solidify your relationship and help you continue to grow it for personal or professional success!

Follow up and Follow through

Finally, never forget the power of a thank you note. It’s not just about making the right impression; it’s about keeping it and building on it. You’ve worked hard for this relationship – now it’s time to follow through. Water the networking seeds, and your relationship flower will be blooming in no time!

Find these tips helpful? Follow me on social media for more of my networking insights, and don’t forget to check out Part 1, My TOP 5 Networking Secrets Part 1!