Posted By Andrea L. Ciobanu, Ciobanu Law PC
1. Always keep one hand free to allow yourself to shake hands with people. This means that you shouldn't eat and drink at the same time. Remember, you're there to network, not eat a full-course meal.
2. Never try to barge into a group of four or more people. Come alongside the group, but do not attempt to enter into the discussion until you've made eye contact with everyone and a minimum of two other people in the group have said something.
3. Initiate conversation with someone who is standing by themselves. They'll be happy to have someone to talk to them and, as a result, will many times open up with valuable information.
4. When you meet someone for the first time, you have 48 hours to follow up with them before they will completely forget about meeting you.
5. A networking event is not a time to see how many business cards you can acquire. Rather, it is a time to develop a few relationships that have potential.
6. The best location for networking is by a high-traffic area such as a main door, the bar, or near the food.
7. When receiving a business card from someone, take a moment to write yourself a note on it such as where you met. If you do this while you're still talking to the person, it will help convey your sense of personal connection.
8. During the course of a conversation at a networking event, use the other person's first name two or three times. People always like to hear their own name and it will help you to remember it when the discussion is over.
9. Rather than telling a new contact all about yourself, spend your time asking them questions. It's amazing how much you'll learn!
10. Prepare an "elevator speech." An "elevator speech" gives you an opportunity to provide the most important information about you to everyone you come in contact with.
11. Show your appreciation by sending thank you notes when appropriate.
12. Maintain your network by keeping in touch with the people you meet and be sure to update them on important events.
This post was written by Andrea L. Ciobanu, Ciobanu Law PC. If you would like to submit content or write an article for the Indy Attorneys Networking Section, please email Mary Kay Price at email@example.com.