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Network Your Way to More Profitable Business Connections

| January 18, 2012 | 3 Comments

networking for successIt is more important than ever before to build relationships, and the quickest and most effective way is to create what I call, “Relationship Currency.”  Relationship currency means becoming a resource by giving to others.  It changes your mindset from “what’s in it for me?” to “how can I serve others and add value?” Using this approach can catapult your business or career to the next level because others will see you as more approachable. Ultimately this will help you build a more extensive network.

Networking is key to increasing your “relationship currency.”  Here are my best tips for networking effectively at offline events:

Plan Ahead:

  • What is your agenda?  What is your purpose for attending a business or social event?  Is it to promote your company or to find new connections?
  • Did you brief yourself before the event?  Brief yourself on the event you expect to attend:  visualize meeting strangers, making introductions, and opening conversations.  Doing your homework before the event will contribute to your success.
  • Whom do you need to meet?  Decide in advance the specific persons you want to meet.

 Be Mindful of Your Non Verbal Cues

  • Make people feel comfortable within the first few minutes of meeting you.  Always smile! It is important to remember that your facial expression sends a stronger message than your words. You want to look as if you are pleased to meet the other person, regardless of what you may be thinking at the time.

Carry yourself with confidence.

  • How you present yourself physically says a lot about your executive presence.  You must learn to sit, stand, move, and gesture with purpose.  Own your space and always seem comfortable in your own skin.  Body language, posture, gestures, facial expressions, and movement convey energy, vitality, confidence.

 A Grace and Charm Insight:

“Posture, effective use of personal space, eye contact, the smile, and sex appeal.  Those are the attributes of a star.”

~ Walethia Aquil, CEO/Founder of Grace and Charm

 Practice good manners.

  • People like to be around those who are kind and considerate. You are also setting standards for others’ behavior and encouraging them to treat you with similar respect. Practicing good manners will not only give you a competitive edge over the competition, it will also brand you as the preferred partner with whom to do business.

 Wear Great Clothes

  • Remember that your image is very important.   More people will take you seriously and listen to your ideas if you look professional.  With a professional image, trust and credibility are instantly established. Don’t wear suggestive clothing.  Studies show that the more skin exposed, the less likely people will take you seriously.

Make a Strong Entrance

  • Have you evaluated the entrance you make when you attend a function? Since everyone watches the entrance to a room, use it to your advantage.  It is a great window of opportunity.  Important people get noticed immediately.  With a combination of attitude and actions, they exude an aura of self-confidence and control when they make an entrance. Unfortunately, many people think that all they have to do is show up.  It is very important to be noticed when you enter a room.  That’s why you need to project confidence and authority. People who make a powerful entrance don’t rush into a room.
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Editor’s Note: Follow these six practical guidelines help ensure that you will make a great first impression and connect to the right people. Use these ideas at your next event and let us know what your results are.

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Category: Building Your Network

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Comments (3)

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  1. Great post and very timely! I am going to a networking event this weekend and have been looking to do more networking so these tips were helpful! I think a lot of people forget to game plan before going to events. As you mentioned above, it’s good to have a purpose and not just being in the mix.. Thanks Walethia!

  2. Grace Mayele says:

    Great article!

    Can you give an example of a great entrance in the event you are late to a networking event (due to valuable reasons), how do you work the room with authority if the event is crowded or hasn’t reached it’s full capacity?

    Also, what’s the best way to engage people if those who you wish to speak to are conversating with others?

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