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Relationship networking: 9 tips to help you build effective professional relationships

Did you know that investing in relationship networking is a crucial strategy for a successful career? Check out our tips!

Relationship networking - Woman at the center holding a phone and around her there are four circles, which are connected to her, with the faces of different people. This represents a relationship network.

In a dynamic, expanding universe, investing in relationship networking is a fundamental strategy for those who wish to have a successful career.

This strategy has been shown to be quite effective in its purpose of finding new business opportunities, attracting new clients and reaching new heights professionally.

Moreover, this resource is considered a powerful way of sharing experiences, opinions, and knowledge and still allows you to rethink your work methods and keep you up-to-date in your professional field.

However, expanding your relationship network is something that ought to have a strategy, initiative, and common sense. When you go to corporate events, it’s fundamental that you make the most out of the experience.

Want to learn more about the subject?

So, read on and check out 9 steps which will go a long way in helping you (a lot) to accomplish effective relationship networking!

1. Take a business card  

In times of social media, instant messaging and digital messaging apps, business cards are often overlooked.

However, this small piece of paper still holds great importance in the corporate world. It helps with relationship networking- both to convey credibility and professionalism as well as to strengthen the business’ branding and let people know about how to contact you or your business.

Therefore, it’s an excellent idea to have in your pocket a number of cards proportional to the number of people you intend to talk to at the event. And make the best possible presentation!

Often, the person may not remember you entirely or exactly what you discussed, but a well-crafted card will surely stand out amidst dull paper.

2. Map possible participants of the event

Good networking is one that has well-defined strategies. A great and simple one is to first check who will attend the event to determine who would be useful for you to contact.

This doesn’t mean that you should not talk to other guests – this planning serves only as a goal, to prevent you from getting distracted and forgetting about why you are there in the first place, not knowing who to talk to.

Then it’s time to look for opportunities to introduce yourself, and to drive the talk towards issues that are related to your business. Be sure to keep in mind that your goal is to create great professional relationships.

3. Participate in events of your area of interest

To build a good network of relationships, it is not enough to attend an event once in a lifetime.

Quite the opposite, in fact, you need to establish a routine to keep contact with people who can help you in your professional goals.

This way, keep in mind the importance to attend congresses, exhibitions, meetings, and fairs of products and services of interest in your area whenever possible.

There are no rules regarding consistency, but whenever you identify an important event for your business, be sure to attend the event.

4. Know how to introduce yourself

Did you get the opportunity to talk to the person you wanted in the first place?

So, being ready to introduce yourself directly is crucial to relationship networking. Tell them who you are, what is your job and what your business does, and be sure to start off the talk with a smile and a friendly handshake.

If that interesting contact is surrounded by other people, gradually approach them. With subtlety, try to add to the subject of the conversation and try to get with everyone involved.

If you are accompanied by a friend or co-worker, this can make the interaction easier.

Then, when you have the chance, speak directly to the person in question. After introducing yourself and exchanging cards, take the opportunity to make the conversation flow.

5. Demonstrate interest

There’s nothing worse than talking to a person who only speaks of themselves and doesn’t demonstrate an interest in the opinion of others, right?

Thus, demonstrating company knowledge and interest in your experiences is an excellent resource for generating sympathy and sparking the interest of a person – especially in the professional environment.

Therefore, give them space to introduce themselves, tell a little about their experiences and lead the conversation without any pressure.  After all, the chances of establishing partnerships during a pleasant and friendly conversation are a lot higher.

6. Overcome your shyness

shy person

Corporate events are often crowded. That way, staying still waiting for the time to go by is definitely not the best strategy to expand your network of professional relationships.

Even if it makes difficult and bothers you,  you have to overcome your shyness and face the fear.

It may be hard on the first time, but once you repeat the action and talk to the second person, you’ll get more comfortable and gain confidence quickly.

Keep in mind that people are there to get to know each other, to demonstrate your intention to talk to that person, keep eye contact, and get close. If they are talking to someone, wait your turn and introduce yourself cordiality.

7. Mingle

Another important tip is to walk around the event in search of new possibilities and mingle of other attendees, meaning, do not spend all day in one place.

Be open to establishing a good relationship with the participants and introducing yourself to the companies.

By walking around the event you increase your chances of engaging in interesting activities, finding contacts you did not expect, or even unmissable opportunities.

Therefore, avoid browsing your phone at all times or talking to the same people and take the initiative to explore the place.

8. Invest time in what interests you 

Do you know that saying that “time is money”?

In the business world, this motto is even more important.

So try to invest your time in those who really care about your professional goals – being careful, of course, not to be pushy or too superficial.

Usually, in a five-minute conversation, you can introduce yourself, exchange cards, and establish a dialogue with precision and objectivity.

So, avoid taking up all the time off the other person – even because they probably also have their plans related to networking.

9. Keep in touch with your new contacts

It’s no use investing in relationship networking and meeting several interesting people at the event and not keeping in touch, right?

To strengthen the bonds, it is important to maintain communication with them after the event.

You can add them on LinkedIn or send a friendly message by email, for example.

Another strategy is to follow the blog or other social media channel of speakers whose lectures were of your interest.

Lastly, use the social networks to keep up with the news and updates of your contact. Just avoid sending unnecessary or too intimate messages to the other person.

As you can see, relationships are essential to creating new business opportunities. Therefore, the more refined your contact base is, the more likely you are to build solid, engaging, and lasting professional relationships.

So follow these tips, stand out from the competition and reach the much-desired professional success.