Whether it’s a networking event, workshop or even a dinner party, the idea of having conversation with people you don’t know can be quite daunting.  Here are 3 ways to make the most out of meeting new people and leaving a lasting impression.

1.     Listen
People can get so worked up thinking about what they’ll say when meeting others for the first time, especially in a networking environment.  So flip that thought on its head and focus on just listening.  Get in first and ask the person you meet what they do.  Once they’ve explained it, ask them questions i.e. ‘how long have you been doing that for?’ or ‘what do you love about your work?’

2.     Connect
Think about someone you may know who would benefit from the other person’s service or product.  Be the connector.  Take a couple of their cards and be sure to refer them. Or if you don’t know anyone, email them anyway and acknowledge that it was lovely to meet them and that you will pass their details on to anyone who might benefit.

3.     Pitch   

When it’s your turn to properly introduce yourself, have your pitch perfected.  You should be able to explain what you do in a sentence or two and a good pitch will leave the person you’re speaking to, wanting to know more. Be succinct and never hide your passion.