Jacky Sherman

The Consultant's Consultant

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Jacky Sherman

Networking: Get Others Interested In You Too!

Or you'll get lost in the sea of faces ...

Posted on: 18/09/2013   By: Jacky Sherman


When you go to a large networking event, by the time you leave, most people will have disappeared into your head as a sea of faces. You are unlikely to remember Fred from Joe, or Karen from Liz. However one to two will be memorable and, as long as you remember them for good reasons, these are the people who you will call or contact first ...

If you're interesting you'll be remembered otherwise you'll get lost in the sea of faces!

If you're interesting you'll be remembered otherwise you'll get lost in the sea of faces!

So how do you make sure you're not just one of the sea of faces and people choose to call you? Last week I wrote that the best way to get someone interested in you was to be interested in them by actively listening to what they say. Eventually they will say "And what about you. What do you do?"

Gosh! I wish I had a pound for every accountant who responds to that with "I'm just an accountant, I know, boring isn't it?" or words to that effect. I'd name and shame them but I've forgotten who they are, they're in my sea of faces file! So my tip today is how to respond in a way that gives impact.


Now, health warning time! Unless you're a real out and out extravert don't try to be too clever with this: just be yourself ... but on a good day. Now, if you have learnt about behavioral styles you might like to adapt your response to match the style of the other person. I've made it complicated already haven't I?

Back to simplicity then. Here are the steps to giving a great answer when someone asks you "what do you do?"

  1. Prepare an answer to this question in advance. You will not repeat it parrot fashion but you need to know what you are going to say in advance. Remember, it has to be you but on a good day.

  2. Think about what your clients or customers are left with after you have delivered your service or product. If possible, take it from a testimonial because that is what you really delivered for your client. I love it when a client like Ted Maley, a logistics consultant, sends me an email saying "the good news is that for a mix of reasons I have had more referrals since the training session."

  3. Now turn that into a statement starting with "I help ..." So my opening line becomes "I help people get more referrals - a lot more referrals - from their network of contacts."

  4. Now you need to elaborate a bit. Absolutely avoid - at all costs - trying to explain how you do what you do. That fascinates you not your listener! Tell a story about a client's afters. Stories are great because:

    • People remember stories and love repeating anecdotes.

    • It will be very familiar to you so you can remember it and express it naturally even when you're nervous.

    • It allows you to say how great you are without sounding boastful.

    • You can weave in a bit of how you do it without being boring.

    • It tells your listener something about the sort of people you know.

    • You can make them anonymous if client confidentiality is an issue.

Do you need to go into more detail? Probably not. There's an old show business saying that goes "leave 'em wanting more". If you pause at this stage then your listener will respond, most likely to ask questions and you will drift into a conversation


Here’s an example of one of my stories. Last week I was talking to one of my clients - Roger Eddowes from Chancery Accounts and Tax - who told me he's ticking along nicely now but was still looking to increase his referrals.

So I asked him how many referrals he'd had last week and he said four. Now I remember I met Roger at his very first networking event and he came on my very first training course. I'm chuffed to have helped him succeed!

So have fun getting other people interested in you and when we meet, I look forward to being fascinated by your stories


Would you like to know more about how to motivate people to refer to you? It may be a great idea to call me on +44 (0) 7970 638857 or click here to ping over an email and I'll get right back to you.

Until next time ...



JACKY SHERMAN

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