As the weather cools off in Phoenix, the networking heats up! Here are a few do’s and don’ts for when you’re out there mixing and mingling!
Do get to know who you’re talking to and avoid launching straight into business.
At the end of the day, people like to work with people, not companies. So make an effort to really listen, and learn who the person is behind the company you’re trying to gain business from.
Do show up early.
It’s a lot less intimidating to walk into a room of ten people you don’t know than it is to walk into a room of 100 people you don’t know. Also, more meaningful conversations happen before the party gets started, so to speak.
Do have a few stories about your company’s success in your back pocket.
Naturally, people love a good story teller. So instead of saying “our company is great because of x, y, and z,” give a recent example of a project you worked on and don’t be afraid to talk about the challenges your team overcame. It will come off much less rehearsed AND add more value in the long run.
Don’t forget your business cards
This seems like a no brainer, but you would be surprised how many people show up unprepared to networking events. Don’t be that guy (or girl!).
Don’t hang out in the same spot all night
WORK THE ROOM and try to have as many quality conversations as possible. Even if you really connect with someone, keep in mind that you don’t need to cover everything in the initial meeting (and in fact, it’s better not to because it’s the perfect excuse for a follow up one-on-one!).
Don’t be afraid to interject yourself into a group conversation.
Keep in mind, there is a fine line here between friendly and rude and the key to staying on the tactful end up the spectrum is HONESTY. Don’t pretend you know what the group was just talking about and don’t interrupt the conversation. Personally, I usually just walk up to a group, wait for a pause in the conversation, and then say “I hope you don’t mind that I’ve joined your conversation!” Everyone at networking events knows you’re there to network so It’s not creepy or weird.
Interior Solutions hopes to see you at upcoming ULI, NAIOP, IIDA and Valley Partnership events this fall!