If you’ve tried a few networking events and you just don’t like it, don’t worry, no-one likes everything! And being out there having to speak with different people about different things simply isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. But if you’re in a position where you have to network as part of your job/business, what can you do?
It’s a human fear, a fear that every networker will have had at some point, that we’ll go into a room full of people who all seem to know each other and are deep in conversation. What if we can’t find a conversation to join? What happens if we try and are ignored? Or if no-one is really interested in what we have to say?
If you have (or have had) those fears then you are not alone. It’s absolutely understandable to not want the stress of embarrassing ourselves in a room of people. But here’s the best bit. It very, very rarely happens like that – and here’s why:
In many cases you’ll meet someone before or as you go into the event. That’s the first chance for conversation. In fact, that’s actually the second chance. You may have arranged to go with someone so you’re already in conversation even before the event has started
And any good event organiser will look out for slightly nervous first-time attendees and delegates standing on their own. As they should do – you’ve paid them for an event and you’d rather not stand on your own!
Finally, all good networkers (and good people!) will want to chat with networkers on their own. They want to meet new people to grow their networks. And they want to help
In 99+% of cases, if we have to push ourselves forward just a little, we’re not ignored and we get into conversations. The fear is worse than the reality!