Courage: Making Business Networking Part of Your Everyday Mindset
As small children, we were fearless. That little voice inside that sometimes says “Oh, but they might not want to talk to me.” or “Why would they want to be my friend?” just wasn’t there. We would simply walk up to someone with a toy and say “Wanna play?”. Rediscovering that courage and fearlessness is absolutely essential to business networking. Say you are at a conference and you see someone across the room who works for a company that you respect and admire. Instead of worrying about what you could offer them or what you could talk about, try to go over and just introduce yourself. Don’t go in with an agenda or a planned speech, just say hello! It’s easy to say this, of course, but can be very difficult just to find the courage to walk up to a stranger, let alone start a business conversation with them. So don’t. Talk to them about the conference, how they are enjoying it, start to build rapport. Try building a personal connection before you start to talk about business. A person to person conversation is far more effective than business to business. By forging relationships this way, you can create an entire network of connections simply by being yourself! Be open, don’t come in with any preconceptions, and don’t ask what you could get out of this interaction. In other words, walk up and say “Hi! Wanna play?”
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