I’ve spent a large portion of 2011 helping accountants, lawyers and other professionals become more confident to both stay in to network as well as going out to network. Every time I run a training workshop focusing more on the working the room part of networking, there is normally someone who wants to know how to enter a room confidently. Let’s be honest, it can be very daunting to turn up to a networking event and find the room packed full of small huddles of people. If I’m honest, I always find this a difficult position to be in, and always have to give myself a short and sharp pep talk about going in, being myself and finding looking for someone with whom I can have a good first conversation. [sc name=NetworkingPlan] So, aside from giving yourself a pep talk, how can you improve your confidence when entering a room? 1. Turn up early – as it is much easier to enter a room when it is half empty rather than full 2. Arrive with a friend or a colleague, so you don’t feel as if you are on your own 3. Remember that not everyone is happily talking away, there will always be people who will welcome a conversation with you 4. Arrange to meet someone at the event – then you know you have someone to talk to 5. Look out for people on their own or small groups of open people who you can easily make eye contact with, and start talking to.
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What else would you add to this list?