On Tuesday Jan 26,2010 attended the Enterprise Toronto Seminar at City Hall in Toronto, where Roger Pierce (Bizlaunch) was speaking on Free Publicity followed by Nicole Attias (Nicole Attias & Associates) who has due to speaking on Effective presentation skills.
As the first talk ended entrepreneur who had attended began to networking prior to the second speaking start. As clocked near 10:00am the presenter had not appeared so I stood up and asked the crowd if they wanted to hear and abbreviated 15 minute presentation on ‘Networking your way to Success” .
Presented the P-A-R Strategy which deals with the aspects of networking
1. Business Card (Prepared)
I use a one-sided business card because it is simple and to the point. Name, business, phone and email address with the second side being blank. Many people I was meeting didn't have business cards so I used the "two card process". As I hand my card out there was a second card underneath so they would write their contact information and hand it back to me. Every entrepreneur should carry business cards and they should be ready to hand them out at every networking event or opportunity.
When you are in a networking environment it's very important to have a positive attitude. After all, you are there to generate business. People around you will remember the way you speak and present yourself.
Remember the 3 foot distance rule. You want to be in their space but not in their face. Smile and be courteous. Be ready with a mini explanation of what you do. Stephen Covey says "begin with end in mind" in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. You are there to meet and connect and collect business cards with the result of generating business.
3. Key Questions (Response)
Many people I speak to always have a challenge with initiating conversation. This is easy to overcome. We actually do it everyday when we talk about the weather, the sports or the news. In the networking environment it is done with the specific intent to learn more about the person you are speaking with.
Debra Fine in The Power of Meeting New People talks about having ice-breaker questions. For example you could say "Good afternoon. My name is Terry Grant. I'm from Resolutions Inc. How are you doing?" This can be improved upon with "Great to meet you Steve. My name is Terry Grant. What got you started in this industry?" Or "Tell me about how you..." Or "What do you see as the coming trends in your industry?" And if you are just starting out it never hurts to ask something like "What kind of advice would you give someone starting out in this business?" These type of questions will definitely get more conversation flowing and may lead to a powerful conversation.
Entrepreneurs are seeking ways to voice their passions, talents and experiences to show everyone that it can be done. Networking is and will always be the best way to learn and participate. Put yourself in the arena and learn your hobby or interest and let it grow by building successful relationships with people who may become friends, associates and perhaps lifetime mentors.
Nicole showed up near the end of my fifteen minutes of fame, and the crowd was ready to learn.
Lucy De Luca (www.justbecausz.ca) said it best “Rogue Speaker showed up and talk great information on networking”
Thank you goes to Enterprise Toronto for understanding and allowing me to speak