How to Effectively Network as an Introvert

By Vikrant Bhalodia, writer
Jul 07, 2019
Image Credit: Rawpixel/Shutterstock

Follow these tips to build effective business communications.

You can build your business communication to create powerful relationships for your business.

It is important to build the most powerful relationships possible within your business. Those key relationships and connections can have a powerful impact. But what do you do if you're shy? If you're introverted? Or if you dread networking events and those awkward first conversations where you never know what to say?

Here are tips to help you build effective business communications and to network with people that can build powerful relationships for your business.

Focus on giving versus getting

Sometimes what you can give other people may not even be related to your business, and that's OK. To build a strong relationship and foundation, you will want to be known as someone who is resourceful, who can connect and who is a person who can contribute in a way that serves the other person.

Regardless of whether it is to your direct benefit or has to do with your business or not, building a relationship can be good for the long term. It can take a long time. But it's worth your time and effort because those deep relationships can help you tremendously.

Be present

This does not require you to present yourself in a specific way. It requires you to pay attention to the one person in front of you. That means you need to keep eye contact. Don't look around the room. Focus on the person communicating with you.

People notice when you're not paying attention. It's very rude, and it leaves a bad impression of you. Pay attention to the person communicating and colleagues you meet at the event. When the conversation is over, turn your attention somewhere else. 

Allow your introverted qualities and honor them

Imagine you have attended a networking event that is two, three, four, five days long or more. You need to recharge. That's OK. You can stay in your hotel room all night, and you can take breaks and stay away from the crowds.

Read a book and be by yourself. That's how you get your energy and can recharge. Take the time so that you can come back stronger and refreshed the next day.

 Listen more than you talk

The most interesting people are the ones who really want to know about others. So be that person, ask those questions and listen. Let the other person talk. Not only will you find out so much more about them, but you will be seen as someone who really cares for that person, who really is there to make genuine connections and relationships, and you will be remembered for that.

Later when you follow up with them over email or you send them a message somewhere, you can come forth with your information and say, "Hey, we had a great conversation, I learned so much about you, about your business and where you're from (or whatever you talked about), and I wanted to send you more information about what I do and how I can support you even more."

So start by listening instead of talking and you will win the networking game.

Relax and don’t do too much

Many people who come to networking events run around and try to sell to as many people as possible. And that makes them come across fake. It even makes people want to stay away from them. If you see someone at a networking event and know all they want to do is tell you about their programs and sell their products and services, what would you do?

You are going to stay away from them. You may not even look at them. As a matter of fact, the fewer number of genuine conversation you have, the better. 

Mirroring your partner's energy

This is something every shy introverted person can do, and really anybody can do it. It's a secret of effective communication. What mirroring energy means is replicating the high vibe or low vibe of another person. Are they really happy and energetic? Are they speaking loudly? Are they smiling and laughing? Or are they someone who is a little bit more introverted?

Mirror your new friends. Copy their body language, their gesturing and their voice. It makes them feel comfortable, and it also makes you feel comfortable because you're connecting on the same level.

It's alright approach someone in a group

One of the things that always scares shy people is the idea of standing at a networking event alone and having nobody to talk with. This actually feels really stupid. But it's acceptable to approach someone or even approach a group of people, if there are already talking.

You may want to go up to a group and stand there and listen to the conversation. See how you can contribute. Later, you may actually become part of the conversation and part of this circle of people who are talking. Don't be shy.

Of course, don't go in there and try to take over the conversation. See how you can add important information, how you can add value and slowly introduce yourself and become part of the circle of people who are already talking.

It is expected that you're coming to a networking event to network. People will understand. They believe and expect you to come up to them and try to have a conversation.

Head of Operations with 10+ years of multi-functional expertise across Sales & Marketing, Consulting, Web Content Management, Operations and HRM at WeblineIndia. Having passion towards technology and with multi-functional expertise in a Software Development Company based in USA and India, Vikrant loves sharing insights on optimizing the success and internet visibility of the customers’ businesses.
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