Whitney Randall

Feb 18 2014

How To Network Your Way Through Your Next Social Event


Networking

I’m excited to start my first blog post this year talking about one of my favorite activitiesnetworking! Whether you are a business owner, real estate agent, or a banker; walking into a room full of people can feel a little overwhelming. The word “networking” itself brings up images of shallow salesmen who thrust their business cards forcefully into your hand with barely a “hello,” all while scanning for someone more important. Networking is a skill that is learned, and the more you practice the better you will get at it. After all, business today is becoming more and more about not what you know, but who you know. Here are four of my favorite tips to help widen your networking circle:

  • Be Fearless. Remember, everyone else is at the event for the same reason you are, so walk up and introduce yourself with a handshake and a smile. Positivity is contagious!
  • Ask Questions. “How did you come to be in your line of work?” For some, their career path can be quite an interesting story. Having an opportunity to share their story of success can leave helpful clues along the way as to who they are and what makes them tick. Remember to go beyond the weather and really connect with someone on a personal level; ask questions that are out of the box!
  • Be a Good Listener. People love to talk about themselves. Let them give you valuable insights about who they are and what they do. You might even learn something new!
  • Follow-up. Contact them again within 24 hours. Send them an invite on LinkedIn, send an email, or even a hand-written note to help build rapport with someone you’ve just met. If appropriate, you may even find time to connect for a cup of coffee or lunch to talk about opportunities with each other.

Try using these four tips at your next networking event. You never know—it may help open a door to new opportunities for you and your business.

What are your favorite networking tips? Share some of your favorite networking tips with me in the comment box below.

Whitney Randall

About Whitney Randall

Whitney Randall is a Commercial Deposits Officer at Hills Bank’s Coralville location. She has been at Hills Bank since 2001 helping business owners manage their deposits needs and assisting businesses with cash management services so business operations can be as productive and efficient as possible. Since 2008, Whitney has been considered an expert in electronic payments after earning her Accredited ACH Professional (AAP) certification. Whitney is very active in her community and is involved in such organizations as the local Chamber of Commerce, Friends of the Animal Center Foundation, and The City Circle Acting Company of Coralville. Whitney can be reached at whitney_randall@hillsbank.com.


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