How do you show up at networking events? Are you the person who quickly finds a place to sit, grabs your phone and starts looking intent upon checking your most recent text or email? That is a good way to send the signal, “Hey, I am here at this event, but don’t really want to be, so don’t bother me!” Related: Networking Your Way Into The New Year Or, are you the person who latches on to the first person you recognize and then you hang with them the rest of the evening, hoping that they won’t leave you stranded and all alone? Recognize either of those scenarios? I do. Unfortunately, I have been guilty of both of those behaviors. You see, I am an extreme Introvert. People are always surprised when I tell them that, but it is true. As a result of being an extreme, off the chart Introvert, I truly hate networking events of every stripe, including parties, which are just networking events with a social aspect as opposed to a strictly business purpose. I hate them all. I make myself go to events, however, because I need to let people know what I do. Once there, I have to force myself to put the phone out of sight and look for people I don’t know instead of the familiar faces of those I know already. If you are looking for work or have a job that requires you to develop some semblance of grace and poise in networking situations, you need to develop a more positive attitude toward networking.
August 10, 2016