4 Tips on How to Network With Someone You Admire
Have you ever received an invitation to an awards gala, a workshop/conference or even a networking mixer where a celebrity expert that you admire is also scheduled to attend? I have and knowing what to say or do can be stressful.
Here are four tips I have found, that have help break the ice when I find myself networking “up”.
• Do your homework.
You will be tested on the information at the Event. LinkedIn and Facebook are great tools that can tell you in seconds what specific topics resonate with the person you are wishing to “connect”. Also note who they collaborate with, and their inner circle relationships. Pictures are worth a thousand words and take special note of their profile page to learn of personal stories they have shared.
• Create and practice “sound bites” of who you are and anticipate what the response might be.
This tip can give you confidence. You will be prepared for whatever time frame you find yourself in as well as honoring the time of those who you will be speaking with.
Several years ago I went to a taping of Oprah with friends. We had general admission tickets and sat as the back of the studio. A producer of the show came walking through the audience introducing herself and when she came to me she asked my name. I had a 10 sec introduction I gave her. She responded and wanted to know more. I went through to my 60 seconds introduction. She thanked me and immediately went to the front of the stage to move a woman on the front row. She then asked a stagehand to escort me from the back of the studio to the front row. When Oprah came out for the preshow warm-up the director introduced me and told her that I had some good ideas for the show’s theme that day.
• Make sure you have all your networking tools ready for the Event.
Several years ago Brian Tracey was the Keynote Speaker at an Awards Gala I was attending. I learned through doing my homework, that we had a mutual friend and colleague. On my phone I asked our friend to make a short video introduction that I could use. He did and at the Gala I played it for Brian during our dessert. We had such a great conversation using my phone introduction. He was more than happy to share stories about our mutual friend that brought both of us joy. Make sure if you plan to show pictures or video that your device is charged and is easily accessed. Several business cards and a pen are also good to have available.
• Be prepared for candid and posed pictures that are consistent with your branding efforts.
If you, for instance, normally wear glasses, then keep them on during the event for pictures. If people see an inconsistency in your appearance then it will take longer to build trust. Being congruent in your appearance is one of the fastest ways I know to build trust.
After the event and the world knows that I have connected with someone I admire, the most frequently asked question I have been asked to comment on is, “So what are they REALLY like?”
John Maxwell, in my opinion, takes “Walks the talk” to a whole new dimension.
During our first lunch in Guatemala John went around physically to each of the tables of 140 Trainers and thanked us for helping make his dream come true, of training an entire country in Transformational Leadership. I felt his sincere gratitude and connection when he mentioned one of my life events made on my online bio. Since that day my reality is that John C Maxwell did his homework on ME in preparation for the event we were going to attending together.
Quoting John Maxwell—Everyone Communicates , Few Connect.
About the Author
Alana is just as comfortable in her traditional roles of Wife, Mom, and Grandmom, as she is in her less traditional roles of International Speaker, Trainer, Successful Business Owner, and Best-Selling author.
One of her favorite quotes is: —“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” By Ben Franklin
Contact Alana at: http://www.johncmaxwellgroup.com/alanamckinney/