Research has proven that networking is a skill that everyone should master in today’s world. It is more than just being friendly with people; it is a secret route that opens up pathways for future jobs or attracts new clients. Although, at first, networking can seem intimidating, uncomfortable and fake. Luckily for you, if you master these three key strategies you will become a networking pro.
1. Identify Shared Interests but Be Yourself
Passion is not something you can fake. Don’t go out of your way to satisfy someone’s interests but instead share and showcase your own. More often than not, people will appreciate learning something new or even start to show interest in what you are saying. Employers always seek the type of individual who has the ability to inform and educate those around them whilst clients seek someone who is reliable and knows what they are talking about. Ultimately, networking is about bonding and finding mutual interests.
2. Consider What You Can Offer
If you feel that you aren’t connecting with anyone at the networking event, try to take a different approach. In this situation, consider and demonstrate what you can offer to prospective employers or potential clients. The key to this approach is not to brag about yourself but identify how you can satisfy the values and ideals of the person before you. Employers look for those who possess values such as honesty, loyalty and trustworthiness and clients look for experience and expertise. Stand out from the rest and prove you are the right person for the job with your unique insight and knowledge.
3. Be Goal-Oriented
The last factor that you need to consider is: why are you even networking? Are you doing so to boost your career or are you doing so to find support and/or find new clients? People tend to be more attracted to those who are selfless rather than selfish. More importantly, highlight your end goal and the difference you want to make. Overcome aversion and take control of networking situations.