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The Dos and Don’ts of Networking

In a past interview, Jackie Kennedy Onassis was praised for her intimate ability as a conversationalist that instantly resonated with her hosts, friends and acquaintances. After a journalist mentioned her charismatic rapport, she laughed her famous breathless laugh and responded, “I never really talk to people. I really enjoy just listening to what they have to say.”

At Red Fan Communications, it’s pertinent that we practice this sentiment in all of our work, particularly when networking. We’ve noted some important do’s and don’ts along the way that help us to properly exercise Jackie O’s mantra for building both our clients’ businesses and our own.

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Wear a name tag at events

DO: Write legibly and place your name tag on your right shoulder (most people are right-handed and will naturally look to your right when shaking hands).

DON’T: Never write illegibly or place it where your lapel covers it.

Carry business cards

DO: Make sure your name, your business’s name, logo and contact information are on one side. When you only have time for a quick introduction, your business card will carry you far beyond.

DON’T: Avoid using a font that is hard to read quickly because it is too small or scripted. Don’t overcrowd the card; leave space for acquaintances to take notes and make sure the paper quality is easy to mark on.

Set goals for your conversations

DO: Always try to learn at least two things about your contact. What do they do for work and for play?

DON’T: Don’t avoid asking questions, people generally like to talk about themselves if given the chance. It will open doors and you might learn some things you have in common.

Be personable

DO: Try to get to know them beyond the surface and build strong relationships from the get-go. If you struggle with breaking the ice, here are some great ideas for meeting people.

DON’T: Don’t just talk about yourself. This will get people talking about you, and not in a good way. As my grandmother always told me, "Always listen to others, then you know what you know and what they know."

Want Red Fan Communications’ help growing your business? Send us a message at info@redfancommunications.com and let’s get you there.

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