Essential Keys to Networking Effectively

Essential Keys To Networking Effectively
Copyright © Scott Bradley

One thing to keep in mind as you build your network, and build those trusting relationships with people that may be a friend for life, or a business partner down the road, is to know and realize that..."People LOVE to talk about themselves."

Have you ever gone to a career fair, or party and started a conversation with someone and only really focused on you and what YOU were about? How did the other person react? Were they receptive to listening to what you had to say? Did the conversation last a long time or short period of time?

Think about it. Think about the last time you had a conversation with someone you didn't initially know. How did it go? Did you get their contact information wanting to contact them again, to build the relationship further, or did it just fizzle out?

You see...if you are one of those people who loves to ONLY talk about themselves when meeting new people, from my own personal experience, and learning how to interact with people and build new relationships, I have learned that it is seen as conceited and arrogant.

You may be sitting there reading this wondering...Ok Scott...How do I become a better conversationalist and a better person to build a relationship with?

Well here is what I have found to be the most effective in any situation where you are in a room full of people that you don't know.

After introducing yourself you want to make sure you get the answers to these questions before going further. Whether you meet people online, face to face, or over the phone you want to ask these questions...

1. What do you do?
2. How long have you done it?
3. What did you do before?

These three questions are so powerful because the answers to these questions can lead to other questions. In any and every situation everyone has an answer to these three questions. They are far more effective than asking Yes Or No questions because it gets the other person talking more...thus sharing more about them. Since people like to talk about themselves, make sure you listen intently. Lean in as they are speaking and make sure that after they are done answering your questions you can link connecting questions to what they previously said.

Once you get good at this, the conversation becomes like a tennis match...You bounce one ball over, they bounce another one over...Pretty soon after asking these three initial questions to the both of each other, the conversation can turn to any subject or topic. Its really a lot of fun.

Now as a current college student I change up the questions a little bit when talking with my peers.
Here is what I tend to ask when interacting with college students.

1. What School do you go to?
2. What year in school are you?
3. What is your major?
4. What made you choose that major to study?

Again you can see that these questions are focusing on them. Naturally, they will ask the same questions to you.

A really good strategy is, ask people the questions that you want them to ask you. They will naturally say, "And you?'

I have found using these three and four initial key questions is highly effective at networking functions, and career fairs. At the last career fair I went to I saw all of these kids go up to these "executives" and think they could just go to them and say something like this..."Hello my name is John. I am really interested in working at your company...here is my resume...thanks a lot..." I either see that scenario, or one in which it is just an awkward silence between them because they don't really know what to say...

Remember...recruiters and anyone for that matter LOVE to talk about themselves.

At the last career fair that I went to I went up to some tables and asked those three questions. The three initial questions were great ice breakers and the conversation moved to other interesting topics they wanted to talk about. At almost every table I went to they asked for my resume....Need I say more?

The reason I believe they wanted my resume was because by me showing them I could effectively communicate and carry on a conversation with a personality, further showing a genuine interest in them and what they were about, they naturally wanted to get to know ME more. The way I presented myself was different than everyone else who was just willing to take take take…give the resume move onto another table.

My philosophy in life is that I must give before I receive. It is a universal law, just like the law of attraction.

So Just remember...
1. People LOVE to talk about themselves
2. Show a definite interest in what the other person is saying
3. Look to build a relationship with them and create a win/win situation

Have a wonderful day!
Scott Bradley

I Have Moved My Blog To Wordpress.
I will no longer be posting to this blog.
Click http://www.NetworkingEffectively.com to visit the new blog

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Very rarely you get people who are WORTH social networking. Do you know why?

Ans is :
1. your quote on your page - "I love meeting and networking with awesome like-minded people" -

2. Hard to listen non-interesting talks - almost like pretend to be something/someone you're not.

I would prefer a natural (which is also EFFECTIVE) networking over
forced one (which will give up its breath sooner or later)