How to Network Like a Boss - Why Networking is a Big Deal

In 2012 I was attending a conference in New Orleans, and during the 2nd day of the conference back then my manager Rex Steiner said to me: "let's go and I will introduce you to some people." He started to introduce me to people from different companies and positions, and at one point he introduced me to a gentleman called Michael Walmsley. To me, these introductions were just a random "hi, nice to meet you" stuff and I had no interest in getting to meet more people. I was starving and thinking about lunch.

Several years later Michael Walmsley emailed me saying he would be visiting Dubai and would like to get together for lunch. I didn't find this strange but I never used to something like this before. So I met with Michael for lunch and we had a good conversation. A year later after that lunch, Michael offered me a job. I am currently working with Michael, and I love what I do for living. It is the best job I have had so far!

Why networking matters? Because one day an opportunity will come from the introductions you have made, somewhere, sometime, maybe at school or maybe at Coffee 2.0. So why not to get the best of out any networking opportunity?!

Since the networking is becoming increasingly important for individuals in the business world, how can we network in the most effective way possible? Bringing a business card, a brochure, maybe even a resume should already happen by default. On top of that, here are 3 tips I use to network effectively. I encourage you to practice these tips and you will be doing networking like a boss!

1. Remember the name. Many people from the networking evenings or workshops will notice that I learn peoples' names' quickly and mention their names several times during the conversation. It helps me remember the name and at the same time associate the face of the person I am speaking with to the name. Next time when I see that person, I will remember the name and that will be a great ice-breaker! Practice the name and you will have a great intro to any conversation.

2- Ask for Email, not the Phone Number. I can claim that emails are more reliable than phone numbers. I like email and I prefer asking for an email address rather than a phone number. Also some people might be shy to share their phone number from the first time during the networking event, but I have never seen a person saying "sorry, I prefer not to share my email address." Next time when you meet someone at a networking event, ask for an email address, and I bet you will get it easily.

3. Follow up. What most of us do is get a business card from the person we meet at a networking evening, and later either lose it or stack it up with the rest of those business cards that we never ever bothered to check. If you want your networking evening to be fruitful and productive, as well as turn that evening into a future opportunity, it is highly recommended that you follow up. Even if you plan no business or any sort of collaboration with the person you met at the networking event, I would still encourage you to email that person just to say "hello" and "it was nice meeting you." This will not only give you practicality of adding his/her information to your email that you can search later, but also leave a good impression of you on your counter-partner. You will be perceived as a professional networker, and this will definitely help you in the future. The world is small, and you never know who you will run into. Keep networking!

If you want to put your networking skills to test, don't miss our networking evening "Coffee 2.0" on August 2nd at Park Inn Hotel. For details, please visit Looking forward to seeing you all there!

Happy Networking!

#networking #howtonetwork #Coffee20 #Businessnetworking

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