Getting over your networking blues

Ms Manners,

I’m not good at meeting other professionals. I always get so nervous and not sure what to do when talking to new people. What can I do?


Meeting new people can be exciting for some and extremely daunting for shy folks out there.


Overcoming shyness can be a lifetime journey and that nervousness and pounding heart may never leave you when you walk into events. So try to turn this nervous energy into a positive power surge as you walk through the door.


Push yourself to meet new people at these events and try and resist the urge to stick with people you already know and feel comfortable with, unless of course it is a great new client – give them lots of your attention.


Make your way around the room, smile and shake hands with many people and hear their stories, don’t just tell yours.


Unless the title of the networking event is “Speed Networking Event” then don’t speed network!


Give people your time and attention, don’t be that person who just whips around the room trying to get as many business cards as possible.


Remember that every meeting is an opportunity to connect, grow, sell, build relationships and benefit.


The final point for networking – the all important introductions, and here is yet another life lesson we can learn from Bridget Jones (yep, Bridge):


In the film, Bridget’s friend Sharon explains how to do a proper introduction, “Introduce people with thoughtful details such as, ‘Sheila, this is Daniel. Daniel, this is Sheila. Sheila enjoys horse-riding and comes from New Zealand. Daniel enjoys publishing.”


Perfectly said really.


Enjoy your new confidence and the game of etiquette.


Kind Regards,

Ms. Manners


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