Last Thursday, I attended an MYP presentation on Speed Networking. This was presented at DLA Piper LLP’s offices in Liverpool’s India Buildings, by Lee Warren of Invisible Advantage. Lee is a motivational speaker, career coach and a magician, who has coached several well-known clients.
The presentation covered how to network effectively. As it turned out, of all the talks and sessions on networking, that I have attended, this was the best that I have been to.
As a keen networker, I was eager to see, how I could improve my networking skills further. I enjoy networking and meeting people from different industry backgrounds, and hearing their stories. From a personal perspective, I consider networking not just to be about making connections and giving out business cards, but to establish a two-way relationship, based on respect and trust.
The presentation itself was very informative. I particularly enjoyed and was impressed with how Lee introduced the event, by performing a magic trick for starters, before bringing his networking experience to the audience, using humour and enthusiasm, to get his points across. Lee also allowed us to practice, by conducting a number of short exercises. An example of this, involved talking to a fellow audience member, which was fun to do, and everyone was able to get involved.
Lee talked about the fundamentals of good networking, which included these interesting points.
- Avoid factual questions e.g. “What do you do?”
- Find something in common with others
- Avoid staying on a single topic.
- Remember to always listen.
- Repeat a person’s name out loud at least once.
- Comment positively on a person’s business card.
- Always follow up afterwards.
- Use LinkedIn to connect, comment and contribute content.
- Prepare an elevator pitch.
All the points above made sense to me, but the importance of preparing an elevator pitch has since stuck in my mind. This is because I have not always been conscious about the importance of this previously.
Afterwards there was an opportunity for everyone to have a drink and nibbles, whilst practicing our networking skills by developing our networks, and sharing stories and interests.
To conclude, I have learned some useful networking tips, and it was a privilege to listen to Lee Warren, as his networking knowledge and magic tricks are a joy to see and listen to. I seriously recommend going and hearing him speak, if an opportunity arises. For more information, you can visit Invisible Advantage at http://www.invisible-advantage.com/.