According to Niall Flanagan, Managing Director of Club Inc., skilled networkers are subtle, patient, determined, focused and consistent. They do what they say they will do, when they say they will do it, and they connect people.
Niall’s top 10 suggestions:
- Attend events that are relevant to you and your business.
- Arrive early so you don’t walk into a room full of people who are already in conversation.
- Be confident in your language and actions- people buy certainty and confidence, but turn away from arrogance- be careful.
- Listen more and talk less. It is no coincidence that you learn more when someone else is talking.
- Become the gatekeeper and the go-to contact. Build your strong contact network over time so that other people think of you first when they need help and advice.
- First impressions count, so make yours positive. Everything from appearance and handshake, to your attitude and body language.
- Know your elevator speech – a short, sharp explanation of what you do.
- Self-management of your time. Don’t spend too much time in one discussion.
- Be a farmer not a hunter – avoid selling and trying to get a deal on the day.
- Always follow up with the contacts you make.