Unconventional Networking
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Unconventional Networking
Breanne Bannon
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Unconventional Networking

DIY Sprocket Solutions

This article has been updated on 9/29/2020 with the article entitled “Grow Your Network Without the Usual Handshaking.”

More networking?! Yes my friends… more networking.  Unfortunately for you anti-socials out there, contacts don’t generally fall out of the sky.  And we’ve talked about putting yourself out there and NetWORKing… but where are you going?  Where are these connections being made these days?  The answers might surprise you.

Yes, events specifically set up TO NETWORK are great avenues to utilize.  As with anything though, there are always a few down sides.  One big flaw being that everyone is there to get their name out there.  I’m not saying that people can’t or don’t make real genuine connections at these events –because they do! I’m saying that sometimes there’s so much hustle and bustle with other sweaty palmed people trying to nervously get their name out there that they may not necessarily recall yours.

So what’s a savvy business person to do? QUIT! Just kidding… You live your life.  You get up, you go get coffee, you head to the gym, you check out a bookstore, you go to a restaurant or a sporting event –whatever you normally do, keep doing it.  Do it with one small change.  Start to talk. Start to engage.

Open your mouth at the next baseball game and say something more than, “Hey, where did you get the nachos?”  Get a conversation going, and work your business into it.  It’s not a networking event, but you obviously have something in common with these people or you wouldn’t be standing in the same space as them.  If nothing else, the two of you are breathing the same air.  Find some common ground.  Open your mouth. Start talking.  What’s the worst that could happen?  Well, I guess you could open your mouth to talk but get nervous and instead emit some sort of half strangled choking snorting noise.  And I completely understand that that may be a horrifying experience for you.  The good news is, if you embarrass yourself, you can turn around and walk away.  You never have to see that person again.  You may need to find a new gym to save yourself from shocked stares; however horrifying though, I’m quite sure that your life will go on.

You can find some great connections in the most unconventional places.  You just have to be willing to look, willing to talk, and willing to be shot down from time to time.  Think of it like dating.  You’re trying to pick up the right contact.  You might get a few drinks thrown in your face, but hopefully you’ll eventually find the right line and get a number or two.  Good luck!

What are the most unconventional places you’ve ever networked? Did it work?  I’d like to hear about your success and obviously about your giant flops.  Leave me a comment!

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Breanne Bannon

Breanne BannonBreanne Bannon

Breanne is a Content Writer, Social Media Marketeer, and Sales Associate for Sprocket Websites.

Other posts by Breanne Bannon
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