As a career professional, it is vital that you spend your time establishing useful business contacts. This will be of use when it comes to securing lucrative deals, negotiating better rates from your suppliers, taking on new members of staff, and boosting the profile of your brand.
One of the best ways for you to expand your contact list is by attending high-profile networking events. In order to make a success of these occasions, you will have to take on board the following 4 tips.
1. Think up great openers
It has been suggested that people establish their impressions within the first three seconds of meeting someone. That is why you need to think carefully about what you are going to say when you meet a potential contact at a networking event.
Ideally, you want to strike the right balance between a generic opener and an opener that is so controversial it creates an uncomfortable atmosphere.
Whatever you decide, the most important thing is that you accompany your conversation starter with a broad smile, direct eye contact, and a firm handshake.
2. Invest in your appearance
If you struggle with confidence, you should also endeavor to invest in your appearance. You can do this by picking out a smart outfit, fixing your hair, and keeping your shoes spotless.
If you are female, you should also opt for subtle makeup choices that you don’t have to worry about touching up during the networking event. Although it is important that you don’t go overboard, it is vital that you also find a way to stand out for the right reasons.
Perhaps you could invest in a striking yet sophisticated tie, a snazzy set of cufflinks, or a designer pair of shoes. This will help people to identify you and will improve your chances of creating a lasting impression.
3. Do your research
Another great idea is to do your research on the kind of people that you are likely to meet at a networking event. You should go online to find out if the event in question has a virtual guest list.
If it does, you could perhaps familiarize yourself with these individuals, and their previous work, for example.
This will come in handy if you experience a lull in conversation and you are desperate to turn the situation around. Being actively interested in others goes a long way in the business world.
4. Leave people with a great impression
Finally, you should leave everyone you meet with a great impression. Instead of walking away from a networking event, call it a day and hope to hear from somebody, it is important that you adopt a proactive approach. One of the best ways for you to do this is by going online to make your own business cards.
This approach means you’d be able to hand over your card before moving on from a conversation. This is a brilliant way for you to let someone know that you are serious about following up on your chat, and would like to establish yourself as an important business contact.