1. Remember that networking is about being genuine and authentic, building trust and relationships, and seeing how you can help others.
2. Carry Business Cards with you at all times. You never know who you might meet and where!
3. Be Yourself. Even if you are little shy, you don’t have to act like an extrovert in networking situations. Be yourself always and interact with people in your own way.
4. Attend the events that matter. Breakfast, Lunch time, Speednetworking…there is probably a networking event taking place at a location near you right now! It’s essential to make sure you only attend the events that are truly beneficial for you.
5. Do your homework: If possible, ask to be sent a list of attendees in advance so you can do some research and spend time effectively with those contacts you really want to talk to.
6. Introduce Yourself: make sure that people know who you are and what you do.
7. Become known as a powerful resource for others. People will remember to turn to you for suggestions, ideas and this keeps you visible to them.
8. Listen. In networking situations, spend as much time listening as talking. Remember that old saying: you have one mouth but two ears, so use them in proportion!
9. Follow up quickly. Your networking doesn’t stop once the event is over. Make sure you follow up with those you’ve met, share information and offer to help in any way you can.
10. Be clear: Its important that you are able to articulate what you are looking for and how others may help you. Be specific
Foluke Akinlose MBE is the founder of PRECIOUS. Follow her @foluke