It is no surprise that we live in a system that prefers ideally extrovert characteristics. Even we personally admire people who can put on his weight in a group and make his presence known.
More than often, the effect of introversion is a negative one in your career path. You will miss the opportunity to be a part of a community or a group, which might have guided you or gave you critical feedback for your professional growth. Here are 7 ways introverts can learn to strengthen their networking skills:
1: Find your confidence
Before starting to network, you need to have sufficient confidence so that you can nail it. First of all learn what you are good at and which field interests you. It is important that you understand your preferences before going to networking events. For example, if you are trying to change your job profile, then you need to do a research on that profile to bring about the confidence to connect with others.
If you have the interest, the confidence will come on its own and with confidence, it will be easier for you to be able to communicate. You can also prepare the questions and topics that you would like to discuss with the other professionals. Practice can help you a lot. If you prepare beforehand, you can be able to break the ice with strangers having the same interests as yours easily.
2: Take it as a challenge
Introverts may not be able to express themselves easily but they can easily take on a challenge. Make networking be a challenge of the week or month for you. This will help you gather the courage to start.
You can also make monthly targets for yourself; like you will meet five people that you do not know in the next month. Maybe it will not work out at first as you think but still you will slowly level up your courage.
3: Start virtually before jumping onto the real thing
It’s imperative that you cannot start networking like a pro from day one. So it is great to have some experience of networking through virtual platforms. This should give you enough confidence to join professional networking events, conferences and other events where you get to meet people. You may use some of the popular professional networking platforms like LinkedIn and Meetup. They will help you to get the idea on how you can communicate professionally and yet strike a relationship that will open career avenues for you in the future.
4: Get a buddy to tag along
Are you afraid of getting stuck alone in the corner of some place in an event? Bring your friend along with you to attend such events so that you do not find yourself in an awkward position and lose your confidence. If your friend is good at networking, then it is a bonus for you. You will find a way through him to meet new people. It will be a lot different than what would have been if you attended it alone.
5: Learn about body language
Are you trying hard to shed the skin of an introvert but it is not working? You must have got your body language all wrong. Sometimes it is not your inner introversion that is responsible for your situation, but your body language. It might be keeping away people from coming near you.
Check out with an expert or you can check out various online Job portals which have discussed about the topic in details. Do not put up a defensive body language. Adjust it to be a positive one and you will see the effect it has on your personality. You will become magnetic and others will start the conversation.
6: Understand the power of small talk
Never underestimate the power of small talk! You do not know the wonders it can do when you are communicating with someone. Small talk is the open-secret ingredient to successful networking skills. People love small talks and if you can open a line or two that is going to put the other person in your confidence and trust.
7: Participate even if you fail
Do not give up. This is now sounding a bit clichéd, but many a times we are blind to the things that are in front of us. So, even if you do not feel like you are up for it at the first, try again. Try organising a mini event where you can call few of your friends along with some of their friends. This will help you to increase your network.
The right ingredient is your effort. It will all depend on your effort and how you manage to find a way to fight out of your introvert life to being someone who enjoys the company of others in your professional life.
- Used Book in Good Condition
- Shawn K. Lipton
- SKL Navigation Consulting
- Miriam Salpeter
- Learningexpress, LLC
- Edition no. 2 (10/07/2013)
- Billy Dexter, Melissa G Wilson
- Networlding, Inc.
- Kindle Edition
Last update on 2017-03-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API