Networking is a way to meet people and make new friends. Start conversations by finding common interests and using questions to building engaging conversations.
We tend to have a fear of rejection, concerns about being taken advantage of, and sometimes self-worth issues—all barriers to networking. Ways to break the barriers can be:
Consider type of people you want to meet and where they might hang out. Then go to those places and start conversations.
Attend an event with the goal to meet one new person. Prepare by having a conversation starter—topic that is of interest to you such as sports, books, movies, or hobbies.
Listen to others. Engage in a conversation without monopolizing the discussion. Respect differing opinions and experiences.
Consider how interactions make you feel—are you happy talking with only one person or do you like to share information with several people?
Ask questions to start conversations. Inquire about recommendations for events to attend, business books, or helpful podcasts.
Networking is about meeting people, having courage, and preparing.