Being Bruce -: Networking Event Tip #7 - Bring YOU, Not Your Business

Monday, August 10, 2009

Networking Event Tip #7 - Bring YOU, Not Your Business

Networking Event Tip #7 - Bring YOU, Not Your Business

It should go without saying that most people don't go to networking events intending to buy stuff, or hire people. It should go without saying, but I'm going to say it anyway. Don't go to a networking event expecting to make a sale or get hired to perform a service. Go to meet people with whom you'll hopefully build great relationships.

So bring yourself. Don't even consider talking about your business very much. Unless someone starts asking a lot of questions about your business, you're better off meeting a few people with whom you click or have something in common and getting to know them a bit.

And when you bring yourself, "be" yourself. Be the genuine you. You likely learned long ago that you won't ever please everyone and you also won't be drawn to everyone either. So be yourself, which should be easier than putting on some kind of fake "show" and see who you connect with.

One caveat: if you do try to reduce your displayed "you" to the lowest common denominator so you won't offend anyone and will just be seen as pleasant and bland, don't assume that's the best route, but the very blandness might cause you to miss out on your best potential matches (remember, we're not talking about dating here, but we are talking about relationships).

So it's easy, right? Just be yourself and make the effort to talk about your business no more than maybe 20-25% of the time if that much.

This post is one in a series on how to make the most of in-person networking events. If you're going to go (and I suggest you do if your business benefits from relationships), you might as have the most fun possible and give and receive the greatest benefits from the occasion.

If you know of a networking event in the greater Wilmington Area [which means to me anywhere from Topsail Island, NC to North Myrtle Beach, SC] that's open to visitors, drop me a note ahead of time and I'll try to post it.