1.Don’t Cling To The Person You Came With
It is a natural occurrence that as people when we travel in groups, we tend to stick with the people that we came with, rather than venture out to meet new people and engage in new conversations. Attending events with your friends and associates is fun, but don’t forget the primary focus of the event is to network.
Socialize with your existing contacts, but don’t forget to venture out and meet someone new! This does NOT mean that you cannot attend a networking event with a friend, but in the event you do, make a conscious effort to move independently throughout the event in an effort to network and connect with new people.
After all, your friends are already in your network :).
2. Go Solo!
Going solo to a networking event creates an environment in which you are open and easily accessible to meet new people. It is also very likely that you will be focused on connecting with new potential contacts without feeling like you are neglecting your associates and friends.
3. Focus On Connections Not Cards
When attending networking events, many people take a huge focus on collecting business cards. However, if you don’t take the time to focus on meaningful conversations and establishing some synergy with the people you are networking with, the business card simply becomes a remnant from the networking event that will eventually get lost in your purse. Focus on connections, not cards.
4.Network With A Purpose
When attending a networking event, you should have a clear purpose in mind in relation to what you want to achieve. Are you an event planner seeking to connect with more vendors? Are you a Marketing Student seeking an Internship? Determine the purpose of your networking so that you can establish clearly defined goals and metrics when attending networking events.
5. Don’t Get Stuck
At a networking event, it is commonplace that you will eventually meet some people that you will end up having a great conversation with. However, make sure you remember to float around the room and meet some of the other event attendees. Don’t get stuck in one conversation all night.
It is great to meet people that you share similar interest with, however, your next business connection could be in the same room. You’re never going to meet them staying in the same place. Don’t get stuck. Make sure you work the room!