With Halloween approaching, I’m reminded of how networking can sometimes be very SPOOKY (a.k.a. intimidating). Here are three tips to keep in mind the next time you are at a networking event.
(1) A SCARY firm handshake with good eye contact can go a long way.
Say your name and where you work. (No need for long winded titles, role explanations, etc.). When your counterpart says their name, say, “It’s so nice to meet you, [NAME].” Saying the name again increases the likeliness of remembering it.
(2) Bring a FRIGHTENING number of business cards – more than you think you need.
Also, end an exchange with giving a business card. Offer up an appropriate call to action based on your conversation (e.g., a meeting, coffee catch-up, etc.)
(3) Don’t just talk to the GHOULS you know – it’s called networking for a reason.
It’s important to meet new people. This can be the chance to secure new business for your organization, or get a mentor, or learn something. It’s important, and isn’t as scary as it seems. You. Got. This.
Bottom line: networking takes practice but it’s an essential skill as a new PR pro. Do you have any tips that help you make the most of networking events? If you’re looking to test out your abilities be sure to come to one of our upcoming events.
Megan Bonelli (formerly Peterson) is a Senior Account Executive and Franco and a Detroit PRSA board member/blog committee chair.
Picture by Pexels