Set a goal to talk with two or three people. This works! As an introvert, going to meetings with the objective to meet three people makes all the difference in whether I actually walk up to people and start a conversation – or run for the door as soon as the meeting is over. I have met some incredible people I would never have met if I hadn’t pushed myself a little (or a lot) to take the initiative to meet them.
Turn off your cell phone. Yes, completely off. If your phone were to ring it would be embarrassing—and that funny little sound it makes when it vibrates is louder than you think.
Do not head immediately for the hors d'oeu·vres-no matter how hungry you are. The people you meet are more important than the snacks.
Smile. Sounds so simple but sometimes hard to remember.
Since we’re on the subject of mouths, remember your breath mints. Note: I didn’t say gum which is way too easy to start chompin’ and poppin’ when you are nervous.
Keep a distance of 18 inches or so between you and the individual you are talking with. Any closer and you might find that person backing away.
Look everybody you talk with in the eye and genuinely listen as they speak with you. You just might be surprised what you learn.
Ask for business cards. If you have business cards of your own, put a few in your pocket but don’t offer one unless the person you are talking to asks. Important note: put the business cards you collect in a different pocket than your own business cards.
Don’t dominate any one person’s conversation. Talk with a person and learn a little about them. Give your 30 second commercial. Tell them it was nice to have met them. Ask for their business card. Move on to another person.
Send each person you meet a note the following day telling them it was a pleasure to meet them and thanking them for the opportunity to talk with them.Networking. . .that's what it's all about.
Get a job!
“The way of the world is meeting people through other people. “ ~ Robert Kerrigan