Networking has changed!
When I first started work, networking meant senior managers on a smoke break or on the golf course. Today networking events are far more common and are not the preserve of grey suits, though those groups do still exist! With the growth in small businesses and especially female entrepreneurs the face of networking has changed significantly in the last 5 years.
There is a networking event to suit everyone, but it is important to recognise what type of person you are. Whether you thrive on the type that require a set number of referrals each month, mandatory attendance each month and a rather large yearly membership fee, or the type you just turn up to each week for the price of a cup of tea and cake.
Whichever approach you choose, it pays to do your research and go along as a guest or visitor before committing to membership.
So you have plucked up courage to finally go along, don’t be daunted or feel intimidated, after all everyone in the room has been in your shoes at some point! LoveLBG was created on the back of bad experiences at those grey suit groups, and its foundations are very much on an informal relaxed approach to make everyone feel welcome, so there is no need to feel apprehensive, to help you, here are some top tips from our members;
LH- I think the old “we’ve got two ears and one mouth for a reason” quote is always worth remembering! When meeting someone new at a networking event always listen to them and ask what THEY do first and show genuine interest in their business and how you can help them before you tell them about yourself!
JE - Be yourself
SB - I think my number one tip when it comes to Networking is make sure you have plenty of marketing materials. e.g. Business Cards. I often feel that when it is a large network group, you can never remember everyone, When I get a card from them, I put some little comment on there to remind me, a little mental jogger.
AS- You are your shop window - so dress the part and be confident about the image your business is projecting.
CC - Don’t be afraid to network with people from your own industry who you might regard as competitors. It is great to share good practise and support each other. Go to groups which you enjoy – networking should be social as well as business and there’s no point going if you don’t enjoy it or feel under pressure to make referrals or attend meetings even if you are busy
Take the next step and we hope to see you soon.
Forthcoming LoveLBG Events