Last week, Sean Kim, contributor for Entrepreneur.com published an article on how to improve networking skills. The article identifies ways we can make networking much more successful. One of them is changing your mindset, and we agree with it wholeheartedly.
Change Your Mind…Change Your Approach…Change Your Results
Your perception of networking can affect its effectiveness in making worthwhile connections. If you see a networking event as a chance for you to advertise your business to people repeatedly, you’ll likely leave with people not wanting to see or hear from you again. However, if you see it as a chance to meet new people you can connect with later to discuss business and other pastimes, you’ll end up with many more opportunities.
Why does it matter how you think about networking? Because it affects how you approach it.
Before we go any further, throw the word “work” out of networking. People don’t want to feel like they are working when they are at a networking event. It’s the best part of being in the business world. You get to have fun meeting different people who have similar interests. When you treat it as though it’s just another work thing you have to do, you suck all of the fun out of it.
Think of networking as recess for your career. Just like in school when you worked at your desk or listened to the teacher lecture, you would have time for recess. While you were still with your classmates, it was a time to have fun and connect with them in a different way. What’s surprising to most people is that learning is still going on even though the environment has changed.
How to Change for Your Next Networking Event
The next time you go to a networking event, think about it as professional recess time. It doesn’t mean you can let loose to the point of being unprofessional, but it does mean you can loosen up a little and genuinely care about meeting people who are in the same industry as you. It’s an opportunity to put all of the formalities aside, and connect with people in a new, refreshing way that could lead to something much bigger for the both of you.
Give It a Try with a Huddle
You don’t have to wait until another networking event; you can set up a meeting on HuddleDo! There are many professionals in your area that are looking to connect with you. Simply set up a Huddle, invite people to meet you, and show up at the place you’ve chosen. Once you get there, use your new networking skills. You’ll likely see people will be much more willing to meet with you again.
Leave a comment and let us know what you think about this post. Do you believe that changing your mindset may help you have better networking experiences?