Cathy Yeomans, Imagine Public Relations, White Rock, BC,

The purpose of networking is to meet people – not only potential customers/clients, but also people to create partnerships, business relationships and general connections. To get the best results you’re your networking efforts, consider these tips:

  1. Dress professionally, appropriately and keep your body language open.
  2. Introduce yourself and have your 30-second elevator speech ready when someone asks what you do.
  3. Ask open-ended questions and sincerely listen to the answers.
  4. Give and take. Connect people and introduce others to your network, it’s not just about what you can get out of the networking process.
  5. Network at conferences, community events and through professional organizations (like Chamber of Commerce, Board of Trade) and networking groups. Join a group and get to know the rest of the members.
  6. Always follow up and follow through. This is the key that will determine if your efforts to network were worth it.

If you’re new to networking and uncomfortable with putting yourself “out there,” remember the best way to improve your game is to play outside your comfort zone. So get uncomfortable and create success for you and your business!

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