Networking 101 – Mind Your Manners
By Nikki Viljoen of N Viljoen Consulting CC
Craig Harrison says that the reason that Networking may not be working for you is because of the basic 9 mistakes that Networker’s make. I am going through these over the next few weeks and let’s see if this is what is holding you back.
The seventh mistake, Craig says is “You don’t mind your manners. Networker’s can’t make small talk, don’t show an ability to exchange pleasantries and interrupt others. Can you gracefully engage and disengage from conversations? Are your questions intrusive and your answers curt? Are you showing proper respect for the stranger you’ve just met? Or are you singing Opera? If so, your tune is familiar: It’s ‘me-me-me-me!”.
Well that one certainly is familiar to me. Why is it that people seem to think that their time is more important than mine. That what they have to say is more important than what I have to say.
Often, when I am engaged in conversation with someone else, they rudely push in, shove something either into my hand or the hand of the person that I am busy in conversation with and demand to be heard there and then! How rude!
I must admit, that although I will get to them eventually, I usually leave them until last. I find it difficult to be pleasant to someone who has treated me with such disrespect.
Going to a networking meeting with the only thought being what you can sell to someone is not going to work for you at all. Remember, everyone is there for the same purpose – we all want to sell something. I mean, think about it – who goes to these things will the sole purpose of buying something – certainly not me and if you are all honest with yourselves, neither do you.
The mindset needs to change though, because you need to go to the meeting with the idea of helping others – through connecting others with each other, you yourself will become connected.
That’s how it works for me and that is how it will work for you. You have to give, in order to get.