1. Hard selling – networking is about making connections, if you connect with someone and think there might be an opportunity to do business with them, make a separate appointment to meet them away from the event.
2. Turning up without your business cards. This is not only annoying for someone who may want to do business with you, it can make you look either disorganised, unprofessional or ‘aloof’ and not willing to connect with others.
3. Trying to speak to everyone in the room – this is not normally possible anyway. If you do manage it, the connections you will have made will not be very strong and you will be forgotten very easily, probably before you’ve even left the building. Having a few meaningful conversations with people is a far more valuable use of your time.
4. Giving out negative vibes - be careful of the silent signals you are sending out. If you are nervous or shy are you giving off signals that could be misinterpreted as ‘aloof’ or disinterested? Even if you are the shyest person in the world, make sure you smile at people and keep your body language open.
5. Mass emailing all attendees after an event to introduce yourself is just really annoying and unlikely to gain you any new meaningful connections. Only send emails to people you really want to connect with and ensure the email is tailored to them and not just a generic sales pitch.
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