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THE BLOG

British Business Networking Etiquette

business networking etiquette
Business Networking Etiquette

Business Networking Etiquette is essential for those wishing to expand their network, gain promotions, and achieve business success.

The adage of 'it's not what you know, it's who you know is still true today. Despite the endless possibilities of reaching out via social media, building relationships face-to-face will always triumph over other avenues.

Did you know that 60% of jobs occur in the 'hidden job market where roles are not advertised but offered to someone who has been 'recommended'?

Business networking etiquette should be a natural element of your day-to-day life and is certainly not something to be switched on or off for specific networking events or clubs. From a friend's birthday party to a relative's retirement gathering, most occasions present the opportunity for meeting new acquaintances, both young and old, and offer everyone the chance to expand their contacts.

Most successful business networking results from gatherings where you are relaxed and genuinely interested in meeting new people. It is, if you like, a by-product of having good social skills.Whether you are naturally an introvert or an extrovert, networking well and understanding business networking etiquette will directly correlate with opportunities coming your way. While the thought may fill you with some apprehension, a simple process can be applied to most business and social situations.

 

MY TEN-STEP APPROACH TO NETWORKING WITH CONFIDENCE

  1. Set yourself a goal of whom you wish to meet and how you think they can help you achieve your aspirations. If you don't know who will be there, plan to talk to just two or three new people.
  2. Prepare and practice your small talk questions beforehand.
  3. Before the event, spend time visualising, meeting new contacts, and looking and feeling confident. This can have a profound effect on the outcome.
  4. Prepare a social and business elevator pitch, so you are confident in those first few opening sentences.
  5. Ensure you have all your props organised, so they are easily accessible.
  6. Before entering the event, take a few moments to clear your mind of what's happened during your day and focus on what's to come now. Become present so that you can give your full attention to people.
  7. Always keep your right hand free to shake hands and make notes.
  8. If you are at a Business Networking Event, remember the objective is to ascertain any synergy between you and the person.
  9. Don't give out business cards to every single person you meet. They should be treated as a gift and only offered if there appears to be a connection.
  10. If you are attending a social event, then business cards should only be offered at the end of the evening and subtly.

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