Due to the unreliable economic times, one can never be certain that how long a job is going to last. In a time like this all you can rely on is your networking skills to get a job, it’s like collecting sources for a potential job. You can never work enough on making new professional relations, and carrying out the old ones at the same time. What you need to do is build a strong personal contacts list, also never shy away, be confident.
When you start on working your networking skills all you need to do is draw a few rules, and never cross them. Doesn’t matter if you’re a successful businessman or an new employ. The only thing that matters is that in the business world you will need skills, and contacts to survive.
Now, networking is divided into two parts, we have direct networking which is in conferences, social events, or industrial events. On the other hand we have indirect networking, it’s done directly by you but it uses social networking sites, personal blogs, or through different forums. In both direct and indirect networking you require the same set of skills. Given below are a few tips to improve your networking skills and to get a job.
The first thing you need to do is be yourself, don’t pretend to be someone you’re not as it will never last. Just relax and think of it as making new friends rather than networking, this will take the edge off. All you need to think about is that networking is making new friends and helping them as you can. If you think about networking as building your future you might freak out and mess up your entire working. Just keep calm and make new friends in the business world, also learn the difference between friends and people who are using you.
Set goal for yourself before any direct or indirect event. The goals can be small and simple, they don’t have to be complicated or impossible. It can be like by the first hour of the event one or two people would ask you for your contact details. Always be sure to keep a short goal so it can be completed, and do not get over stressed. If you are generally a shy person, push your limits, as much as you can. Being shy will not help you in developing your network to get a new job. If you have a friend or a colleague and you’re both looking for a way to build a contact list, you can work together. By working together I do not mean that you share your list, try to keep competitions so you can work better.
I’m sure you have heard of the phrase “Practice makes a man perfect”. Keep this in mind and start preparing early for the upcoming event. As you already know the people, who are important and are like you. Identify such people and then make your move, you don’t have to start from the top. Make groups of people and divide them in levels, start from the lowest level and work your way to the top. Always remember people’s faces and name, as people like being known and remembered. When you are well prepared, you will feel more confident and in control. Also, keep in mind dress to impress, don’t be overly flashy or underdressed, nail the dress code.
If your are new in the networking business, or have been trying for only a period of time, a room full of people might scare you. Always remember that you need to go for smaller groups, as there will more chances of having a real conversation. As talking in a huge group will only allow you to comment on certain things, and it will just blur away. Look for groups of three to four people, as you will be heard and understood better. The larger the group the less contacts you will make.
The one who learns the most, is the one who listens, always listen more than you speak. The majority people you will come across, will like to talk more, so listen to every word they have to say. Keep in mind people don’t want to be told that they are wrong, or what is wrong with you or them. Keep the conversations friendly but professional, short but informative. If you keep going on and on without giving the next person a chance to speak, this will result in a dry one way conversation.
Make a pitch that is short and quick to impress, this is also known as the elevator pitch. It is called the elevator pitch because, you have time till the doors open. Keep in mind not to rush, make a clear statement. Your pitch should reflect your personality, and how you can help them succeed. Once you have created a relationship with people, try to stay in touch as much as you can. In order to keep the relationship alive and on going you need to meet every now and then. If you don’t have time for even coffee, a quick call, SMS or email should do the trick. Try to communicate on different ideas, share articles or blogs that interest you and your friends work field.
The last thing you need to work on is your true personality; you have to be relaxed, interesting and polite. You need to understand that networking is not such a difficult thing as people make it to be. Your personality is what make you likable, and people appreciate honesty then being lied to. Remember if you are honest, interesting and hard working, people will see that in you. Always be well mannered, either you are networking directly or indirectly. Keep in mind this like, not to speak when others are speaking, it’s rude to interrupt. Wait for a moment so the next person has made his/her point clear, before you make yours. If you have a shy personality, you will need to work on conversation building, and when to speak.
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