We’ve mentioned it before, but I’ll reiterate – in the business world, networking is key . In order to successfully network, you need to be prepared. Therefore, we have pooled our networking resources and come up with some great ways to prepare you for your next networking event.
Business Cards: First and foremost, always collect and make sure that you have enough business cards to bring to an upcoming networking event. Believe me when I say that you do not want to be the only person at a networking event without a business card! While you may not get to have an in-depth conversation with everyone at the event, business cards will allow you to make a quick and easy introduction and will serve as a takeaway that other networkers can use to remember you.
Confirm Registration: Twenty-four hours prior to the event, call to confirm that your registration information is correct. If there is a fee for the event, check to make sure that everything was processed correctly. Regardless of whether or not you get a confirmation e-mail, it is always safe to make a call to the event coordinator. This way you do not have to waste time on logistics when you arrive.
Research: Use social media to research and reach out to event attendees. Learning about the event and its attendee or exhibitor list allows you to figure out who you want to speak with ahead of time. If nothing else, you can impress attendees by already knowing a little bit about them.
Practice: Rehearse a quick elevator pitch about yourself – this way you are not stumbling for words when someone asks about what you do. For some good advice on how to craft an elevator pitch, check out this YouTube video.
Most importantly, relax! And always remember to look professional, but be comfortable. If you look confident, you’ll feel confident!