Month: July 2019

Selling through the room

I was talking to a contact recently and used the phrase “Selling through the room”  They said they did not know what this meant. I realised that, in any industry, we use jargon that we assume others understand, and I had just fallen into that trap.

I have a belief that responsibility for successful communication is with the person doing the communicating.  I had used “selling…” phrase before and have assumed that the person I was talking to understood the jargon. So, in the past week, I have reviewed all my presentations on networking, my blogs, my postings and the notes I use when having a 1-2-1.  I have made a commitment to taking jargon out of my communication, or at least not assuming everyone understands the jargon being used.

Someone happy to ask the question “What does that mean?” has really helped me to improve my communication.

And, by the way, the phrase “Selling through the room” means doing business with the contacts of people you meet, not necessarily the contact themselves.

How do you deal with jargon?

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Three stages of networking

I do a lot of networking and I treat each event as a business meeting, and I always prepare for business meetings.  At each event there is the possibility that I will meet the best contact I have ever met, and that’s what excites me about networking.

Here are three stages I use:

The first stage is prior to the event: when I accept an invitation to an event, I book some extra time after the event into my diary, so I don’t have to rush off. If there is s delegates list I look through and see if there is anyone I would like to take more time to talk to and I will contact them and ask if they would like a 1-2-1 after the event.

If there isn’t anyone who I want a 1-2-1 with at that time, then I can just spend more time with people at the event.

Stage two is at the meeting. I use my 3/3/3 rule (See

After the meeting I move into stage three, I continue to develop the relationships with people I have met at the event. First, I email everyone who’s card I have and thank them for their time, ask did they find the event productive, send them any information I have agreed to send them, sometimes this is information about one of our Groups, sometimes information about the ad-hoc networking events we arrange that are not part of our core business.  (I always ask someone when they give me their card if they are OK with me sending them information) Occasionally I will suggest a 1-2-1.

Whatever the email says I always make contact after any event, and yes it takes time, but since the point of networking is starting and developing relationships, it seems obvious to me that this is part of successful networking.

What do you think?

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The more the merrier?

My business is business networking, we have Groups who meet every two weeks and there is membership. We also have a maximum number in Groups of 25 and our Groups start small and grow organically to that number. When people contact me about visiting a Group one of the questions I am often asked is “How many are in the Group?” To me this is based on the idea that the more people you have in a room the more chances there are of getting business. That has never been my experience.

I have been to networking events of over 600 people and a) You could not hear yourself think b) It was all sell, sell, sell and c) I did some great networking with the small group of people who sought peace in the bar.

My Groups are small, start small and remain under 25, and we do have a waiting list so I could choose to get more into some of our Groups. Why this decision? When I network I want to meet people who are there to build relationship, share knowledge, give support and then, when there is a strong mutual trust, refer people. The important part of this is building relationships, and I think this is best done, at any one time, with a small number of people.

As a business owner, it could be argued, that I should want to get really large Groups and make the most money. I disagree. I want my members to get the most from the business networking they do in their Groups and from the membership they pay. Within any one of my Groups there is a ‘Feel’ almost impossible to pin down but based on a mutual support of each other and on the strong relationships that have been developed. So, what I want for the members in my Groups are not just numbers of people there but of people who understand that building relationships is the most important thing about business networking. This is not a numbers game.

What do you think?

Have fun.

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Why bother with business cards?

I recently met someone at a business networking event who said “I don’t have any business cards, because I think they are a waste of money” he went on to explain that people tended to remember him and, if they wanted to know anything about his business, they would find him if they searched online. I was amazed. My business is business networking and so that’s what I do. In a working week I can meet perhaps a couple of hundred people and whilst each person I meet is memorable in some way, I’m human so  people I haven’t met before can be forgotten or I can misremember the name of their company. When making contact with them after the event it is the business card that is vital Why? Because I look at their business online, look them up on Linkedin and connect*, and then make appropriate contact by email. Appropriate? Some people may have asked to attend one of my meetings, others have asked to be invited to our corporate events, and some I have already met, and we are along the road of building a strong working relationship.

Anyway, back to the business cards. I know that these days people have various ways of collecting information electronically from the business cards of people they meet. That is great, but there needs to be a business card to collect the information from. So my advice to people who don’t have business cards, or people who just have a telephone number on theirs? Accept that we are all fabulous and all forgettable and help others help you and your business by having a business card, it won’t be a waste of money. Honest.


*Recently told about ‘Find nearby’ on Linkedin If you, and the person you are talking to, both have the Linkedin app on your phones: both open them, tap the My Network tab. Tap Find nearby at the top of the screen. Genius!

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