I once worked for six months in a small office with another woman. She once told me I reminded her of Rogelio on Jane the Virgin. Everyone is Rogelio’s best friend. It’s true, I am a bit like a beagle, as soon as I meet you I consider you my friend.
As a new sales professional, I am leaning on every tool and trick to connect with decision-makers. I am so very thankful for my newest friends who I’ve met through networking.
The routine nature of networking events and coffee meetings is perfect for making new friends. (Given my judicious use of the word ‘friend’ you can call them contacts.) Even though you may never invite these people to your home, a good network contact will help you ….. and you’d be surprised how you can help them. So let’s go for it!
Your first function might feel like a blind date. But don’t worry, everyone is there for the same reason. There is no need to be embarrassed. And there will be times where you will run into the same people and that’s okay, too. You are building a relationship with that person as well.
After the function, send a follow-up note to those you met. Make your note sound personal and not a form letter. Trust me, the reader knows if you are sending mass e-mails. Your message can be simple but sincere. No one is annoyed with a simple “Thank you for visiting with me at ______, I enjoyed meeting you.”
Give it a try and let me know how it works.