Doing business is not always easy, especially when it entails you stand out from the crowd when surrounded with a lot of competition. When going to business conventions or networking events, there are some things that you should do to help yourself stand above the rest so that others will want to do business with you over anyone else.
1. Be There.
In this day and age of technology and gadgets, it is hard to have a decent conversation with someone without any interference. There is nothing less professional than trying to have a conversation and the other person pulls out their phone to send a text or update their Facebook. Leave your phone alone. In fact, it is probably better to just put your devices on vibrate so that they won’t be a distraction.
2. Ask Good Questions.
When trying to make conversation, don’t ask lame questions. There are many thought provoking questions you can ask that makes the other person really open up and talk. Ask about how they got started in their line of work or how they started their business. Talk about what you both enjoy in your jobs. The flow needs to happen naturally and easily. Don’t over think this tip or you will self-sabotage yourself. The best way to do this is to be truly interested.
3. Don’t Be A Snob.
Talk to a lot of people, not just those who you think are of the most benefit to you. Be friendly and kind by contributing to the group conversations at the tables you sit at. Be social and talk to people from all different positions and companies. If you just can’t find any reason to be nice, you should be nice in case you need someone’s business one day.
4. Have a Great Business Card.
Usually at networking events, people walk away having a hard time remembering who said and does what. It can be a bit confusing when there are so many people, and that is why businesses and business people like to hand out business cards. When someone has to remember you from your business card, it is very helpful to have a really memorable card to hand out. Make upgrades to your card by changing up the material it is printed on, graphics used, or maybe having something to make people laugh on it. No matter what you do, make your card not only stand out, but be sure it has all the information that is required on it to help someone remember what you do and how to contact you.
5. Social Network.
Don’t let the networking stop when you leave the event. Ask permission during a conversation to look someone up on a site like Linked In, or Facebook, or any other site that will allow you to see and remember who the person is and what they do. The more professional you can go, the better. By joining up forces on one of these sites, it is easier to find that person again when business collaboration is needed. It also helps to see someone’s picture to concretely put together a name and a face.