June 15, 2017

How To Network When You Don't Know Anyone

My mom always jokes that I've never met a stranger because of my ability to quickly make friends and easily adapt to any situation. I think I talk too much haha but I also genuinely love people and think that connections and relationships can be found in every situation.

But I know not everyone is like that, shoot even I get nervous sometimes. Let's face it, meeting people and making friends can be stressful. In fact, when I attended the Hartley Social event "Sit With Us"a few weeks ago I knew not one soul going into it.

Hosted by boss babe and business owner Katie, "Sit With Us"; brought students, bloggers and business women together for panels, champagne and some shopping! The entire afternoon turned out to be full of inspiration and great laughs because I was able to make some genuine connections with some of the ladies that I met.

So today I thought it would be helpful to share some of my tips for networking at an event when you don't know anyone. All 5 of my tips are super easy and will hopefully make attending your next event  solo dolo easier and more fun!

1. Wear Something Comfortable That Makes You Feel Confident. Sometimes the right outfit on the right day makes all the difference. So when I'm going somewhere new or to an event where I don't know anyone, I want to make sure that my clothes help add that extra oomph! For me that usually means a dress and a bold lip but find your comfort and rock it girl!

2. Don't Forget To Smile. I can't tell you how many friendships I've started with a big smile and a "Hi I'm Morgan. This place is ________. Do ya'll know anyone here?". I know that sounds blunt but most people appreciate the honesty and it easily opens the door for a conversation. It's so simple it works like a charm.

3. Mix and Mingle In Small Groups. I know big groups and rooms full of people can be intimidating. Especially if everyone is already chatting and looks like they know each other right? So start small. I usually pick a group with 3-4 girls and walk over and casually insert myself in the conversation.

4. Have Talking Points. This might sound like interview or elevator pitch advice, but sometimes I try and come up with a few things that I know I want to learn at a certain event. For example if I'm looking for a new photographer or blogger to collab with, I make mental notes of these things and then work them into conversation. Not only do I make sure I leave with all the information I wanted to gather, but you also take things a step further by actually building a small relationship with whomever you're talking too.

5. Bring Business Cards. I know for me its so hard to keep names and occupations straight when I'm meeting a bunch of people in a short amount of time. Then once I get home I'm driving the struggle bus trying to piece everything back together. That is why time and time again I have learned that business cards are key. Share them, collect them; not only will you have all of your new friends contact information, but for me having something tangible helps the memory of the person stick.

I hope ya'll found some of these tips helpful! I think the most important thing that I can say is that no one is paying more attention to you than you! Remembering that helps take the pressure down so many notches and helps alleviate some of the anxiety I know often surrounds meeting new people. If you have any networking tips I would love to hear them so drop your comments below. Have a great Thursday!


Leela said...

Great tips! I have GOT to get blog business cards!!

What Nicole Wore said...

So many great tips here! I always feel so nervous going into networking events. I'm so glad I finally got blog business cards made.

Kristen from Pugs & Pearls said...

So intimidating!
One thing that really help me in a setting like that was learning the difference between open and closed conversations. Basically, if two people are facing each other talking, that's a closed conversation. But, if their bodies are facing outward and they are still talking, that's an open conversation. You are welcome to join that one! Just knowing you're not interrupting something can make you a little more confident to approach new people.

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