The key to success in any line of work is not a singular thing which can be easily pinpointed. It is a set of different abilities and factors which need to be all at admirable level in order for things to work out in your favor. Amongst these factors there are such things as skill, resources and dedication but also such wild cards as luck and right connections. The last two were on purpose listed together because most people consider them to be something that you cannot influence. While this might be the case with luck, when it comes to having the right connections nothing can be further from the truth.

It’s true, being in the right place at the right time and saying the right thing can sometimes also depend on luck, but more often than not this is something that is completely up to you. With just the right amount of preparation and a bit of cunning planning you can in no time learn how to network like a boss and in this way do a wonder for your business. Here are some tips and advices that we hope you might find useful in your future professional-social endeavors.

Networking Over Lunch

Plan ahead

Although social encounters are supposed to be genuine and spontaneous when it comes to the future of your business and livelihood nothing should be left to chance. You never get a second chance to make a great first impression. So it is a good idea to always have some tested ice-breakers used by some of the most renowned public speakers prepared in advance. This will help you leave the first impression of a man who knows exactly what he wants and is not afraid to seize it with his both hands.

Start off with a joke

Start off with a joke like for instance, “Coming here tonight my wife said, whatever you do don’t try to be too charming, witty or intellectual, just be yourself”. This also serves as a great ice breaker and should immediately set you right in the center of attention. Remember, everyone who is anyone in your line of work should be there so why not use this opportunity to seize the moment for yourself and become the star of the event. Although in the world of business, numbers sometimes speak louder than words, every business is run by people and people can be extremely subjective. This is your chance.

Don’t be afraid to ask for introduction

Most people are not that extravert or wouldn’t call themselves exactly a people person. However, even if this is the case there is no room for desperation. If you are not a people person yourself, what you need is a bit of tactical thinking and an ability to find someone who is. Spot a person who you deem is a well-liked and recognizable face in these circles; leave a good impression on that person and then politely ask him or her if they would be kind to introduce you to other attendees of the event. A solution that is almost as brilliant as it is simple.

Networking Handshake

Listening is as important

While it is true that some people might be genuine interested in what you have to say, the sad truth is that most people can be quite egocentric and like to be listened to more than they like to listen. The more successful the person is the greater the odds of that. What this means is that you should try to develop ability of empathetic listening and in this way, set a personal bond that you might find invaluable later on the professional level.

Do not be afraid to resort to props

Now the effect of this title might be a bit misleading, no one asks you to perform magic trick at the event still, you can achieve pretty much the same effect of awe and respect with the help of adequately designed business card. By making your business card unforgettable, you are bound to leave a sound impression on anyone who receives it; an opportunity that you would be unwise to miss.

Take good care of your business and your business will surely take good care of you in return. Work hard, demonstrate your full devotion to the task at hand and most importantly leave nothing to chance. This way, you will learn very soon that any effort invested in this direction will most certainly turn out to be an effort well spent.

 

Images Courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

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Posted by James D. Burbank

James D. Burbank has worked for years in traditional as well as online marketing. He has worked in Central Asia, Europe and Australasia for years, helping US-based companies exhibit at trade shows in those parts of the world, among other things. He’s been on the ground for years and for the last few years, he has also been working in online marketing. James is currently on well-deserved hiatus and blogs about his experiences, the stuff he’s learned and more. Business and marketing all the way. He is also a father of two and a huge Utah Jazz fan.