Are you at a loss for words when networking?
If, like me, you are a bit on the introverted side and find yourself at a loss of words at networking events check out the list below.
There’s no doubt about it – a room full of strangers can be intimidating if you’re not prepared. Networking events should never include uncomfortable silences – or leave you grasping for something to say. Don’t make shop talk a crutch!
- How did you get started in the business?
- What do you enjoy most about your profession?
- What separates you from the competition?
- What is the biggest challenge facing you in your business?
- How is the economy affecting your business?
- What significant changes have you seen take place in your profession through the years?
- What do you see as the coming trends in your business?
- What ways have you found to be the most effective for promoting your building your business?
- What advice would you give someone just starting in the field?
- How can I know if someone I’m speaking to is a good client/referral source for you?
The last question is delicate, but key to understanding a person’s profession or practice. It should not be asked too early in a conversation, rather after you have established a good rapport and asked the other open-ended questions listed above. Remember: smart questions lead to smart conversations and relationships. Don’t let networking be a waste of time; use it to your advantage!