Since extroverts are energized by engaging with people, you might assume that makes them the ultimate networks. While that can be the case, often times, it may be just the opposite. If you’re an extrovert, the good news is you have no problem getting out there and networking. But how can you make the most out of networking, and take those conversations and turn them into genuine connections?
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Here’s some tips on how you can do it:
Focusing on asking questions and listening. Give the people you meet an opportunity to tell you about themselves and what they do. Asking open-ended questions that require more than a yes or no answer is a great way to get others to open up, especially if they are more introverted. When they answer, be sure to give them eye contact and listen attentively.
Let others lead the conversation. If you’re in a group, don’t feel that it is your job to keep the conversation going. If there’s a break in the convo, allow others to chime in. And don’t interrupt when others are speaking, even when you feel like you have something important to say. Don’t miss out on learning something new because you’re doing all the talking.
Remember that networking is about connecting. The purpose of networking is not just meeting and greeting, but making meaningful connections. While it might be tempting to focus on the larger events, don’t miss the smaller events where there are more opportunities to interact with others. When you come across someone who is more quiet and reserved, take the time to chat with them and help them come out of their shell. They might be just the person you need to connect with.
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Extroverts are built for engaging with others, so when they couple that with these tips, they really can make the most of networking. Whether the event is large or small, use that excitement to connect with others and get to know more about them. Then, build a relationship that will be useful to you both.