Generation X / Generation Y / Loyalty Matters / Networking / Next Gen / Selling Skills



Just the sound of the word makes some people feel uneasy. Let’s change it, meeting new people, opportunities for new business, engaging in an inner circle. Call it what you will. Some people are natural conversationalists, others are not. There are the right and wrong ways to go about ‘networking’ and here are just a few simple ones to help you along your way.

1. Know what to say and when to say it:

If someone comes up to you to and introduces themselves to you and you reply with “Hi, nice to meet you, I’m xxx!” then in my books, sorry for the hard love, but that’s a fail. You need to come up with something that is of interest for the other person to hang around and talk some more and ultimately want to do business with you.

2. Keep it clean:

In our modern day, we’ve all become more casual about our language. In business it’s essential that you remain professional at all times. If you’re not with me, think about the next time you do business with someone, are they being professional to you or casual and dropping a few bombs here and there. I know where I’d want to spend my hard earned cash.

3. Leave the virtual world behind:

While you’re networking or at a function, keep your phone away and out of sight. Unless the host has requested a tweet, or you can QR Code scan someone’s details, keep your phone and friends away. This is business, this is the way to meet face to face and engage with people. Show them you’re interested in them and their business.

4. Introduce others:

If you’re in a group and someone comes up to you to join in, introduce those in your group to the newcomer, even if you forget the names, it’s ok to ask for help, people are quite forgiving at these events. To everyone in that ‘inner-circle’ you’re the guru of the group, because champions lead.

5. Never leave home without your Business Cards:

This is Networking101 isn’t it, but you’d be surprised how many people don’t bring them. I’m a little sneaky, I have 2 lots of Business Cards that I take along, one generic card that gives my Name, Title, Company, Website, and Toll Free number, then the other one also offers my mobile number, Skype, email address. The later go out to those that I really wish to do business with.

6. Follow up:

Ensure you follow up when you say you will! If you have to, write yourself a few notes after you’ve met someone. I’d prefer you don’t write on someone’s business card, unless they have specifically said to. Take a small stylish notebook and keep some ideas or notes for later on.

6½. Send a written note:

If you know me by now, a hand written note is the pièce de résistance. I can’t stress enough what impact this has on you as a person and business colleague. Think of the last time you received a hand-written note of thanks or follow up from someone. I bet some people haven’t ever got one. Then, imagine if you will, what it would be like to get one?

If all of this has got you thinking, maybe there’s more that I can help you with. See what we can do to help you, click here. You could also join us for our live Etiquette Hour (a weekly discussion in Twitter on Business Etiquette) for @etiqhour 8pm Eastern Australian Time Mondays.