Networking Charisma: Don’t Network

First rule of thumb is to reframe the idea of networking.

  1. Relax.  Don’t try too hard, nod your head too much or constantly push by interjecting “mm-hmm.”  These tics
    networking1

    make us feel hurried.  Settle into the social grace of focusing, listening and asking a couple of intelligent questions.

  2. Make statements. Some of us have the habit of intonation that turns up and suggests a question.  Statements suggest ownership.  Questions seek confirmation.
  3. Be candid.  Wholesale agreement with everything that’s said will kill your presence.  Honesty is memorable.
  4. Learn something new.  It renews your conversational confidence and makes you more interesting.
  5. Don’t push. If there is a real connection underway, you will ruin it with a pre-mature pitch.  Business might begin to happen in a follow-up meeting but it won’t happen if you ask for something too soon.

Note:  this is the second in a three part series on Presence and Charisma.

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Lou Solomon

Lou Solomon is the founder of Interact. She is a TEDx speaker and a member of the adjunct faculty at the McColl School of Business at Queens University of Charlotte. Her articles have appeared in Harvard Business Review, Entrepreneur.com, CEO.com, and Fast Company.