How to develop external contacts.
Make the most of face-to-face networking opportunities by preparing and taking it seriously. This American Express guide to effective face-to-face networking outlines six steps to networking success. (1) Set a networking goal for any networking event by asking “What would make this successful for my business?”. (2) Go along prepared to help others, and not simply focused on hoovering up contacts. (3) When you meet people, keep discussions going by asking questions about them and their work. (4) Be the first to break the ice. (5) Follow up on what you say you’ll do in any networking conversations. (6) Check in with your new contacts afterwards by email to say thanks.