Networking with Gratitude

busiwomen, karen baring, julie boyer, daily gratitude projectI spend about 4-5 days per month at different networking events. I have my favorites that I attend monthly and I make an effort to find one or two new ones each month. I’ve been actively networking for over 8 years in this area, and it’s an important part of my business. How does gratitude fit in when it comes to networking?

Gratitude Tip: Networking is about building relationships and serving others. We can choose to be grateful to make new connections, grateful to reconnect with old friends and grateful for the opportunity to make a difference in someone’s life.

Networking is not a place to simply give your card to everyone you see, before making a connection with them. And remembering that you can be of service to someone by connecting them to someone else who could be of service. Not everyone enjoys networking, but in my opinion, being able to create connections quickly with new people is a life skill, whether you are in business or not.

Here are a few of my favorite networking tips that have served me well:

  • Greet everyone you meet with a smile, and look them in the eye.
  • When speaking in a small group, and someone else is hanging around the edge of the group, back up and make a space to include them.
  • Do not offer your card to someone unless they ask for it, or you have determined that they have a need or a want that you can fill.
  • Even better, ask for someone’s card if you can be of service to them in another way (not directly related to your business).
  • Connect people who would benefit from an introduction. For example, real estate agents and mortgage brokers and home stagers.
  • It can be challenging to keep your full attention to the person you are speaking to as the room is filling up, but I recommend giving that person your full attention and in a break in the conversation, politely move on to saying hello to the people who’ve arrived.
  • When you attend an event, aim to connect with no more than 3 – 5 people, it’s not about getting the most cards but more about creating real connections.

What do you love most about networking? Or what is keeping you from networking and creating new connections?

Today is already Day 17 of the 30 Days of Gratitude Challenge. What changes have you noticed since you started? Do you feel more grateful throughout the day?

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