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The Simple Process During and After a Networking Event

Have fun, follow up, and set up 1-on-1 meetings

First, and the most important step, is to have FUN. Think about it this way, if you are sitting down just scrolling through your phone…people will think you are busy or maybe that you don’t want to be at the event. Instead, pick yourself up. It's a networking party, have a great time, and have that positive mindset that attracts others. During this time, get to know other people. I know you are the main character of your story, but this time it's all about everyone else. Ask questions about them, such as their favorite place to eat in (name of city the event is located)? What do you do for fun? Do you own a business? What’s your favorite part of your business? A networking event is not about the sales you can make on that day or even trying to sell to anyone there. Instead, it's about fostering new relationships.

Second, you cannot stop thinking about the great time you had at your networking event when it's over. As soon as you get home, write notes on the people you’ve met. Here’s a secret, every time I go to networking events it's always impossible for me to remember everyone. Sooo...before I move to talk to another person, I excuse myself, grab my phone, and I write notes. For example, if I met Patricia the realtor I would write “Patricia had a navy blue dress and glittery high heels. She discovered the networking event through Instagram and drove there with one of her best friends, Maria. She loves to go shopping, especially for scarves, and likes to go out to eat, dislikes coffee, and she likes to discover new restaurants. Recently, she got a new puppy named Symon. She’s a realtor who focuses on commercial properties, she’s always looking to meet business owners who are thinking about buying or selling commercial real estate.” I normally have notes for everyone I meet. The reason why this matters is because the second step is to follow up. You can say something along the lines of “Hi Patricia, we met at one of the networking events by B&R, and I wanted to see if we can set up a Zoom call or grab lunch” or you can impress Patricia and say “Hi Patricia, we met at the event that ,the network, B&R hosted and there’s this new restaurant in town “XYZ” maybe you can bring your new pup, Symon. I heard the restaurant is pet friendly. I would like to get to know you more and see how I can help you meet more business owners.” In your opinion, which follow up method do you think would work the best? Yep, you guessed it, Patricia loved getting the second text!

Third, now the real party begins. You've met several people and if you followed step 1 and 2, this is when you get to know them better. Here’s where you ask how they started in their business, what drives them to do better, what type of client they would like to have, who are the strategic partners they're looking for, and any other business related questions. Now, don’t get me wrong, it is not all about business. Be personal about it, too. Everything is still about them, not you. However, a great person to network with and be around will ask you similar questions. The best part of it all is that now you know another person. If they liked you and you liked them, then you will begin to start working together and helping each other accomplish shared goals.

Overall, networking is not just about making more money. Instead, it's about nurturing long lasting relationships and working together to accomplish each other’s goals. Your network can only become your net-worth when you think about them, just as much as they think about you. Networking is a mutual agreement, an invisible contract, that you know is there because anytime you reach out to your network, they are there for you and you are there for them.

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