You’re trying to head a successful business, are on the hunt for a new job, have the next best innovative idea or are searching for new opportunities. One thing that you need to learn how to do well is the ever-dreaded art of networking. Like it or not, networking comes with the territory of being an entrepreneur. If you plan on participating in any kind of meetup, networking event or an industry-specific conference on an international scale like WCIT 2019, then it’s time to brush up on some networking skills. In this post, we’ll dive into 10 hacks for making sure you’re totally confident when you step into the WCIT 2019. We split these up into two stages of networking: Preparation and Execution.
Clean Up Your Online Persona
You’re getting ready to go to an important event, but as soon as you open your Facebook account and the first picture you see is a drunken photo of you at your best friend’s bachelorette party! Worse still, your LinkedIn hasn’t been updated since your internship while you were in college 6 years ago! If you want to avoid embarrassment, we suggest taking a look at your online presence. What will your new contacts see when they look you up? Is everything on your LinkedIn page up-to-date? Do your social media accounts look professional and put together?
Grab A Paper And Pen, It’s Time To Write Some Lists
First, write a list of the names of event-goers that you have already met before. Colleagues, friends, acquaintances, and people you’ve met briefly that you want to strengthen your connections with. Then, write a list of people going to the event that you would like to meet. These can be influencers, experts, leaders, people you go starry-eyed or go ga-ga for. Luckily for you, when you get tickets to WCIT 2019, you will be given access to a database of participants. You’ll also get a chance to organize outreach and five-minute meetings ahead of time, so make sure you make the most of it! Finally, write a list of things that you can bring to the table and offer other people (we’ll get back to this point later).
Remember, You’re Here To Make An Impression
Okay, you’ve heard it all before, first impressions are important, blah blah blah, but did you know it only takes seven seconds to create a first impression? And with some high-profile international influencers attending WCIT 2019, there’s no pressure, right? Appearance has a lot to do with it, and the good news is, that’s something you can control. Set a little time aside to decide what you will be wearing to the event. Don’t give off clumsy and unorganized vibes. Have your business cards printed and ready. Dedicate one pocket for your business cards and another pocket for the cards of people you meet and talk to (compartments in purses can work as well). Say goodbye to panicking about losing the contacts of someone important.
Chit-Chatting And Spilling The Tea, What Are Your Talking Points?
If you’re not naturally endowed with the gift of gab, you should prepare some talking points. At least plan how you will introduce yourself. The best way to start is to tell a story. This is where your list of what you can offer comes in handy. Everyone's an expert at something, so think about what kind of advice you can bring to the table based on your own experience. Talk about how you got yourself from a sticky situation. Become relatable to the person you are talking to. Use this time to sell yourself, as in, prove that adding you to their network is worthwhile.
With WCIT 2019 just around the corner, now is the time to start preparing!