Simple Business Networking Tips | Are You An Introvert? Networking For Photographers Made Easy
Simple Business Networking Tips | In a world that feels custom-made for those with outgoing personalities, attending networking events as an introvert may seem like a nerve-wracking effort, but it doesn’t have to be. Introverts can have as many professional advantages as their extroverted counterparts, even when it comes to meeting new clients, or business partners. Success is largely affected by the ability to play to your strengths. If you happen to be introverted, don’t limit your dreams, or give up entirely just because you don’t fit the traditional image of a photographer.
When it comes to building new relationships, introverts get a bad rep, in spite of the fact that introversion and shyness are not the same thing. While extroverts are the life of the party, introverts do better in smaller, more personal settings, and they tend to be better listeners and more inquisitive than their extroverted counterparts.
Make A Plan | Simple Business Networking Tips
During interviews and networking events, it can feel like so much is out of your control. But you’re not powerless when networking — and even when negotiating for more work. Plan a few conversation-starters to get the ball rolling when meeting someone new. Ask questions such as, “How long have you been in the wedding planning?” or, “Where did you originally meet our host?” Open-ended questions spark interesting conversations, and most people love to talk about themselves, their work, and their hobbies.
Play To Your Strengths | Simple Business Networking Tips
A keen set of listening skills allows introverts to connect with others in a meaningful way. Your reflective nature enables you to hone in on new information and ideas. Because most people are better at talking than listening, you’ll stand out as someone who values others. An ability to kill it in a one-on-one presentation is all you need to build a great network: if you leave a great impression on someone, they’ll certainly want to introduce you to their friends.
Take Small Steps | Simple Business Networking Tips
People are attracted to those who are real, and comfortable with themselves. Don’t be scared to let your unique personality stand out. The more you network, the easier it gets, but you have to keep doing it. With practice, you’ll become more comfortable in social situations, and with sharing your true personality. At the office, take small breaks to walk around and casually socialize with your colleagues. Once in a while, invite a colleague to join you for lunch, or coffee.
Ask For An Introduction | Simple Business Networking Tips
This tip is an important one for anyone, regardless of your personality. If there’s a particular person you’d like to meet, try to find a common connection, and as for an introduction. LinkedIn makes this very simple, and if that doesn’t work, approach the event’s host. When you ask someone to introduce you, it holds a lot more weight versus going up to someone and introducing yourself, because the person you’re being introduced to perceives you in a different light if somebody of importance, or someone in authority is bringing you up to them.
Take Your Business Cards | Simple Business Networking Tips
Here’s another chance for introverts to shine. Always have visually appealing business cards ready. They’re a powerful way for you to leave your name behind, so that people remember who you are. Handing out a business card is a trade: you should get one in return. Don’t be the sad soul who leave theirs in the desk drawer for the umpteenth time.
Use Social Media | Simple Business Networking Tips
Professional networking platforms like LinkedIn are amazing for assembling contacts, but less effective at building real relationships that might lead to a new client. For that, you need good old-fashioned face time. Social media makes this is easier than ever. Reach out via LinkedIn, Twitter and even Facebook to people who will be attending the same networking events you’re going to, and let them know you’re looking forward to meeting them. This pre-introduction leads to a more relaxed and effective in-person connection.
Follow Up | Simple Business Networking Tips
Sharing information, be it a website, article, report, or a phone number with new contacts builds your credibility. So if you promised to e-mail an interesting article to someone you met on the plane, make sure you do that. You should also always (always, always) send a thank you note after an interview, coffee date, or anytime someone takes time out of their day to chat with you about a job, company, or industry. That’s just good manners.