Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Watch Your “Packaging”

Filed under: Dress for NetSuccess,Image,Proper Dress — Larry James @ 7:30 am
Tags: , , ,

Something very important to remember when you show up is to be aware of the image you project. Watch your “packaging.” Business networking is often about first impressions, and first impressions are often about presentation. Your image should reflect success. Show up dressed well for the occasion. Groom yourself well.

Never let your appearance cause others to want to disappear. Don’t overdo accessories. Carry yourself well. Your appearance makes a statement about you; it tells others what you think about yourself.

WellDressedMANLook at yourself carefully in the mirror before you leave for your meeting. Does the way you look add to or take away from the message you want to convey? You alone are responsible for how others see you.

“Networking is not an interview, and once outside the office, the strict rules of the dress code no longer apply. You’re left on your own to overdress and look like you don’t belong or underdress and look like you’ll never belong.” ~ Marc Cenedella

There is an ocean a of people who attend networking events. The first thing that they will notice is your physical appearance. Researchers have found that strangers start to assess each other immediately once they’re in a room. People generally form an opinion of your referability within the first few seconds of laying eyes on you. Dress smart! Wearing the right attire to a networking event cannot be understated.

If you’re not sure what everyone will be wearing, ask around to ensure you won’t be the only one sans suit. When in doubt, business casual is your best bet. This depends upon the environment, but universally means “not a suit.” It could be a blazer and slacks, a sweater, scarf and nice skirt, or khakis and a polo shirt.

WellDressedWOMANWhen in doubt, or until you are familiar with the environment you are working in, dress conservatively. It is always better to be too dressed-up than dressed-down. Professional dress is a must for interviews, business networking, employer dinners, or professional events including conferences and association meetings. When in doubt, dress up, not down. Making a good impression is nine-tenths being ready to make a good impression. The rest is just acting natural. No matter what standard of dress you’re at or what culture you’re in, you look well put-together and like you’ve paid attention to details. Also, never be afraid to show some personality too. It helps you stand out!

“At face-to-face events, dress well, polish how you speak, make eye contact and generally present yourself to impress others with your professionalism and charisma.” ~ Demir Barlas

UseNAMESAre you impressed when someone adds your name to the conversation? Another way you can create a favorable image is when you show up, call people by their name. Their name is their favorite word. You say, “I can’t remember names!” You’re right! As long as you affirm that you can’t remember names, you can’t. Not using names, says, “I’m not interested in you.” When you hear someone’s name, repeat it if need be to be sure you heard it correctly. A person’s name is their most important possession.

Have you ever been in a room full of people and someone from across the room shouted your name. When you turned around, you realized that they were trying to get someone else’s attention. Hearing your name short-circuits your brain. People want to know you are interested in them. Calling them by name helps accomplish this. Insert their name in the conversation immediately. It will help you remember it.

Name tags can help you in remembering names. They can also help others to remember your name. Wear your nametag on the right side, in line with your vision when you shake someone’s hand. I favor the plastic holder that allows you to slip your business card in it. This kind assists you in connecting their name with their business. It helps build your brand.

BONUS Articles: How to Remember People’s Names
Proper Dress Code for Networking Events
What Image Do You Portray at Networking Events?

netHQ

Copyright © 2013 – Larry James. Adapted from Larry’s latest book, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Networking Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “Networking HQ!”

Subscribe to “Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James” and receive a fresh networking article or tip every 4th day by e-mail. Click on the “Email Subscription” link on the right under the “search” box. You can unsubscribe anytime!

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

letsbefriends2

Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Authors & Speakers” BLOG at: http://www.AuthorsandSpeakerNetwork.wordpress.com/

Advertisements

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

What Image Do You Portray at Networking Events?

Filed under: Dress for NetSuccess,Image,Proper Dress — Larry James @ 8:00 am

People make judgments about us within the first 3 to 5 seconds of meeting us. Right or wrong, how we are perceived visually is as important as what you might be able to do to help them. According to Kim Zoller at Image Dynamics, 55% of another person’s perception of you is based on how you look. The professional image that you choose to portray during a networking meeting or event will send a strong visual communication to the other person.

Business_peopleI know. It’s cliche, but it’s worth repeating… “You never get a second chance to make a good first impression!” How you dress becomes part of your personal brand. Your professional image is an expression of your brand. It is the external presentation of you. A polished appearance is no longer considered frivolous or egotistical.

Networking events are almost trickier to dress for than a normal day at the office, because what you wear has a big impact on how people perceive you. Most networking events do not have dress codes but if they do, it’s up to you to find out in advance of attending. In general, you can expect to wear business casual to most networking events. Business casual is a style of dressing that is neat and comfortable while maintaining professionalism. It can be one of the most confusing terms used to define appropriate dress.

Clothes help make the first impression, so what should you wear to be your best at such a Networking event? Your first impression is your best networking tool so you want to look your best. Choose something that represents you and your company.

The Greater Phoenix area is warm pretty much year round. Unless it is a formal affair, informal or business casual (but not too casual) works well. You can still dress casually and comfortably while looking professional. Safer to be over-dressed than under-dressed.

dressWellMen: dress sloppy and other networkers may avoid you. Scuffed or dirty shoes and a wrinkled blazer don’t work. Blue jeans, a t-shirt and sandals may not be projecting the right image. Your intention should to to look like someone who looks like they have it all together. You get only one shot to come across as confident and competent. Your goal is to make people want to get to know you better after the initial meeting. For men, a suit consists of dress pants, jacket, shirt, and tie. Any time you want to convey the image that “you mean business” or need to show you are in control (even if you are not)… wear a nice suit. Wear clothes which are clean and neat. Press your clothes if they are wrinkled. If ever in doubt, dress more conservatively.

“Whether you’re introducing yourself to an individual or to a group, people will judge not only the message, but also the messenger as well. How you look, carry yourself, listen, and leave the conversation will affect what others do with the message you’ve delivered.” ~ Ivan Misner

For women, a suit consists of a jacket, blouse, and either a dress pant or skirt. The traditional look includes: a skirt that hits just above the knee, slacks and perhaps pantsuits, simple jewelry and just a hint of makeup. Nothing too sexy. Forget the sleeveless and ruffles. Forget the hot pink and the high heels. Avoid underwear that is visible under clothing and even worse – bras and tops which show your nipples. Look smart, professional and feminine.

Dress as everyone else, and you end up labeling yourself as a follower who cannot think outside the box. You would be wise to overcome this label and empower your competitive advantage by spending just a few more quality minutes in front of the mirror before a networking event.

In general, wear what you normally wear to work unless that is overhauls or nurse scrubs. The idea is to look professional and approachable. Body art such as tattoos and multiple piercings are unprofessional, and while it may not be true, some more conservative networkers may see them as a sign of low education and ignorance.

Always wear a name tag to networking events. You can purchase an engraved name tag with your name and business name usually for less than $15 with a magnetic back. Be sure to leave a spot on the “right” shoulder for a name tag. This is so when you reach out your right hand to shake, your right shoulder naturally moves forward and your name tag is easily read. Name tags help people remember you.

Always dress professionally and appropriately. Dress as you want to be seen – serious, professional, upward-bound and ready to meet and interact with other networking professionals. Invest in your appearance and you are making an investment in your career! You make a connection with your eyes, smile and approach with confidence. Be sure to wear your best smile. 😉

BONUS Articles: Proper Dress Code for Networking Events
Five Quick Tips for Professional Men

netHQ

Copyright © 2012 – Larry James. From the chapter, “Be Coachable!” in Larry’s latest book, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “Networking HQ!”

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

letsbefriends2

Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Authors & Speakers” BLOG at: http://www.AuthorsandSpeakerNetwork.wordpress.com/

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Teach Your Kids How to Network Before They Need to Know!

Kathy McAfee, Guest Author

Larry’s Note: This is a great review for BIG kids too! 😉

Kids need to know more than Social Media to be successful.

Will your teenagers be ready to enter work world? Are they able to handle themselves in a mature and confident way with adults and hiring managers? How would they perform during a job interview over an meal? Do they know how to dress for success? Do they know how to network and communicate with people, other than their peers, in face-to-face situations?

Are your children techno-addicted?

A study from the Kaiser Family Foundation in 2010 found that teenagers spend 53 hours per week on media. “Today, 8-18 year-olds devote an average of 7 hours and 38 minutes (7:38) to using entertainment media across a typical day (more than 53 hours a week). And because they spend so much of that time ‘media multitasking’ (using more than one medium at a time), they actually manage to pack a total of 10 hours and 45 minutes (10:45) worth of media content into those 7½ hours.”

Erosion of social skills

In addition to the scholastic implications of this finding, I am personally concerned about the rapid deterioration and disappearance of basic networking and social skills amongst our youth. Many teens and many young professionals have little knowledge of how to conduct themselves in professional or more formal settings. Many of them have no sense of etiquette. How did this happen?

More than just reading, writing and arithmetic

In addition to reinforcing the importance of education, parents need to teach our children and young people basic networking skills to ensure that they don’t get left behind. Some colleges and even more progressive high schools are starting to introduce some classes in networking and career development. But most of these skills can be started in the home, when kids are very young.

The 14 social skills parents need to teach their children

Here’s what young people need to learn how to do in order to lay the foundation for future professional success. The good news is that you, as parents, can help teach them the vital life skills:

1. How to make proper eye contact with other people. Young people often feel intimidated when speaking to adults and will cast their eyes down to the floor when speaking. Encourage them to look you in the eyes when they speak. Show them how they can smile with their eyes when they speak. Help them notice when and how often other people blink their eyes or identify what color eyes the other person has. This will at least get them looking at the eyes.

2. How to shake someone’s hand. Teach young people how to give and how to receive a professional handshake. Have them watch videos or read tips on the mechanics of a professional handshake. Explain to them why the handshake is so important in our culture and what it can do for them. Encourage them to do it often when greeting people, versus using other gestures that are often associated with street culture. Practice the professional handshake with them and have fun with it. Don’t let them get away with a whimpy handshake. It will hurt their future prospects.

3. How to have good posture. Help young people become more aware of what poor posture looks like it and the negative impact it has on their image and body. Give them feedback on their unconscious body language habits that you observe and what signals it is sending to others. Teach them to use good posture and to stand grounded with both feet on the floor. This not only sends a strong confident image, it is also better for their health and energy levels. Discourage them from slouching at the table, desk, while standing. Find a way to make this a fun discussion, rather than a one-way nagging lecture. Make a game out of it.

4. How to use their voice properly. Help our young people find their voices and learn how to use them more powerfully. Explain to them why UpSpeak, the bad habit of turning sentences into questions when they were not meant to be questions, and why this diminishes their credibility and authority. Help them reduce or eliminate the use of overused phrases and distracting words like “like” or “so” or “um” or even “duh.” Teach them that “yah” is not a word. It is “yes.” And grunting in response is something that animals do, not humans.

5. How to have a conversation. Talk to your kids, a lot. Engage them in thoughtful conversation. Turn off the television more often and turn on the dialogue. Don’t let your children get lost for hours in the artificial world of video games, internet and cell phones. Teach them to art of story telling and the art of conversation. Practice it in the home, in the car, everywhere you go.

6. How to introduce yourself. Many young people are shy and afraid of introducing themselves to adults. They make jokes, jiggle or simple avoid the introduction altogether. Give your young people a simple script to follow until they are comfortable with impromptu introductions. It starts with “Hello. My name is ___________. What’s your name? Nice to meet you.”

7. How to answer the telephone properly. Don’t let your child answer the phone until then learn how to properly answer it with a greeting and introduction. Again, the basics “Hello. This is ___________. Whom am I speaking with?” The last sentence may seem a little formal, but it will give them important information on how to direct the call/caller. Don’t forget to train them on how to politely end the telephone conversation. “Thanks for calling. Goodbye.”

8. How to write a thank you note. Don’t let your kids receive gifts from others without them sending a handwritten thank you card through the mail in a timely basis. Don’t write the cards for them. Don’t let them get away with quick emails or phone calls that you initiated on their behalf. Even a 3 year old can draw something creative and scrawl their name on a piece of paper. The thank you card is an essential, basic form of appreciation and acknowledgement. It shows class and refinement. It is a social grace that needs to be taught by parents.

After every major gift-giving holiday, including birthdays, you should help your children schedule time to complete their thank you cards promptly. Equip them with stationery and note cards. Show them how to properly address an envelop and how stamps work. Check out SendOutCards.com/MotivatingCards for a way that your kids can write their greeting cards on-line and have them sent through the old-fashioned mail system. That best of both worlds!

9. How to eat in public. Remember that job interviews can be lost based upon sloppy table manners. This is often the final test in the interview process and few people are aware of it. Teach your child how to set a proper table, including which side the knife, fork and spoon go on, where the glass should go; how to cut their food and eat it with grace and ease. The best way to teach this is to practice it at your daily meals, taken together as a family.

I realize eating together as a family is becoming a lost tradition, replaced by stand up meals, busy schedules and television and electronic gadget distractions. One of the best that you can do for your children is to take the time to sit down and share a meal with them. Model excellence in your own table manners.

10. How to use polite language in company. Children will copy what they see and what they hear in the home, at school and on the street. While you can’t control every environment, you can control what goes on in your own home. Make the language in your own home a G rating – good for all audiences. Weed out the four letter words and use of slang. Do not tolerate racial jokes or inappropriate conversation. Model excellence in language and communication for your children in your home and in your community.

11. How to dress for success. The last I checked, underwear was supposed to be under there, not hanging out for the world to see and be grossed out by. Help your children take pride in the way they dress by setting a standard that you can both live with. In our family, it is collared shirts and belts Monday through Thursday. On Fridays, we allow appropriate level T-shirts and more casual wear. Sloppy dress carries over into a sloppy attitude and disregard for self and others. Teach your children how to groom themselves, including regular nail trimming, daily flossing and teeth brushing, combing hair and of course regular showers with soap and water.

12. How to be tidy and organized. Don’t let your kids live in your house and act like pigs. They don’t pay the mortgage or rent and thus they need to abide by your standards of clean and tidy. It starts with their rooms – how they manage their personal space. You can help them develop systems and structure to take better care of their things, their time and themselves. All of this carries over into their adult life. These life skills will not only impact the harmony of your home, but it will impact their academic success and future lifestyles. It’s time to clean up their act.

Click cover to order!

13. How to build relationships. Most kids have fleeting friendships with one minute being “my best friend” and the next minute “he’s not my friend.” Most kids are highly influenced by peer pressure and the need to be accepted by others. This can cause them to do things that they otherwise might not do. Perhaps this is part of the growing up process, but we as parents need to help young people get greater perspective on friendships and relationships.

We need to help them identify the healthy relationships from the unhealthy relationships and how to be both selective and open to meeting new people. We need to teach our children what it means to be a good friend, how to make new friends and how and when to let go of the unhealthy relationships.

14. How to talk to strangers and which ones to avoid. Perhaps this one may be the hardest one of all, because it goes against our protective instincts. We don’t want our young people becoming victims of bad people who might try to deceive them, lure them and hurt them. However, there are equally as many good people out there, if not more. You need to teach your children how to be comfortable around new people, how to strike up conversations with strangers, as this will be a useful skill for their future professional success.

Of course, we also need to teach our children how to trust their instincts, what good and bad touch looks and feels like and how to defend themselves if the occasion calls for it. I recommend that you expose your children to the martial arts, where they will learn basic self defense techniques along with the core values of respect, trustworthiness, polite, patient and modesty. As our young people mature, they will need to move in the larger world with confidence and connection.
About the Writer

netHQCopyright 2011 – Kathy McAfee. Kathy McAfee is America’s Marketing Motivator and author of the book Networking Ahead of Business (Kiwi Publishing 2010). In her role as an Executive Presentation Coach and Motivational Speaker, Kathy helps her clients become the recognized leaders in their field by mastering the arts of high engagement presentations and more effective networking. Learn more at her Website: MarketingMotivator.net

Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. His latest book is, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “Networking HQ!”

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

letsbefriends2

Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Authors & Speakers” BLOG at: http://www.AuthorsandSpeakerNetwork.wordpress.com/

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Proper Dress Code for Networking Events

Filed under: Dress for NetSuccess,Proper Dress — Larry James @ 7:00 am

First impressions are powerful. How you dress at a networking event communicates either a positive or negative message about you.

welldressedIn general, you can expect to wear business casual to most networking events (especially in the Greater Phoenix Area). Informal networking events require business casual wear and formal events require suits for men and suits, skirts, or dresses for women. Men should consider wearing black or gray dress pants with a dress shirt and black or brown dress shoes. Women should consider wearing dresses or nice dress pants, a dress shirt and heels or loafers.

First impressions count and are formed in the first 10 to 15 seconds. What does your dress say about you? It is helping you or hurting you? You never get a second chance to make a good first impression. Your appearance is key to how you interact with others and how they interact with you. Dressing well is an instant confidence booster.

Dress appropriately for the situation, group or event. It makes a difference in the contacts that you make. Not being dressed appropriately for the situation shows a lack of respect for others. Improper attire could lead to being alienated or not being taken as seriously by others. People can easily become distracted by how you dress at a networking event. If you’re not sure what everyone will be wearing, ask around to ensure you won’t be the only one in jeans or shorts.

“OMG! Put a light in your closet!” ~ Dave Sherman, Author of “The Networking Guy’s 50 Top Tips” (Upon seeing a sloppy dresser at a networking event!)

Sloppy dresser equals sloppy business practices to me. Proper dress helps keep the focus on who you are and not what you look like. When in doubt it’s a better idea to slightly overdress. Do your best to dress slightly better than the average for the group; overdress and look like you don’t belong or underdress and look like you’ll never belong.

Present yourself well. Business networking is often about first impressions, and first impressions are often about your personal presentation; how you look.

It might help to read, “How to Dress for Success!” by Edith Head.

BONUS Article: Dressing Up in a Down Economy
Getting Dressed

netHQCopyright © 2011 – Larry James. Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. Larry James presents networking seminars nationally and offers Networking coaching; one-on-one or for your Networking Group! Invite Larry James to speak to your group! His latest book is, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “Networking HQ!”

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

letsbefriends2

Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Authors & Speakers” BLOG at: http://www.AuthorsandSpeakerNetwork.wordpress.com/

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Give Your Brand Personal “Curb Appeal” at Networking Events!

Filed under: Attitude,Business Cards,Dress for NetSuccess,Proper Dress,Self-Image — Larry James @ 7:00 am

Making a great first impression is important if you want to be successful in business, especially when it comes to networking events. People form permanent opinions of those they meet within a few minutes of setting eyes upon them. Making a great first impression can be tricky to say the least. Our words, appearance, actions, facial expressions and body language play an important part of how others perceive who we are.

Every point of contact with your personal brand should reflect the impression you want to make on your potential customers, clients and friends. There are many key differences between top-producing salespeople and low performers. Both show up at networking events and you can spot the losers from across the room. They stand out. . . AND so do the winners!

If you show up in attire in which you are comfortable but less dressed up than the event demands, are you being authentic (true to yourself) or disrespectful of other networkers/clients? You are being disrespectful of other networkers (clients, etc.) and it is tantamount to hurling an insult, because it shouts “my comfort is more important than impressing you.” People get it when you dress to impress and they smile inside with delight.

networking2Do you demonstrate a memorable impression? Attitude should be at the top of the list! It’s a quality that makes people say “wow,” when others first see you. It’s your own personal “Wow Factor.” If you are depressed or have had a bad day, stay home! Don’t spread that attitude to others. Veg out on TV and give yourself some time to bounce back.

How does your smile measure up on the smile-o-meter? No one likes a sour-puss. When you greet someone, Leil Lowndes, author of, “How to Instantly Connect with Anyone: 96 All-New Little Tricks for Big Success in Relationships,” says to use what she calls a “slow-flooding smile.” Leil says, “Instantly switching to a 100-watt smile can make you seem phony. Instead, let your smile slowly when you make eye contact. This sends the message that there is something about this person in particular that you like.”

I’m sure you probably know someone whose dress, behavior, or body language, makes you want to avoid them. When attending business networking events, dress like a business person. Over dress rather than under-dress. Dress appropriately for the occasion, of course, but always appear a little more polished than everyone else. The way you dress and carry yourself makes a difference. You don’t have to be on the “best dressed” list for the year, but dress for success, and at least dress up for the occasion. People with bad grooming habits and a crummy outlook on life detract from their personal curb appeal.

buildyourbrandMaintain eye contact long enough to determine the color of their eyes. No stalker-staring. People are inclined to like and trust those who make strong eye contact rather than someone who is constantly looking over their shoulder to see if they can find someone more interesting to talk with.

Face people directly when talking with them. Even a slight turn away signals your lack of interest and can cause the speaker to shut down. No slouching. If you want those you meet to talk more, slightly nod your head up and down as if agreeing with them. This sends a message of acceptance. Research shows that people will talk three to four times more than usual when the listener nods in this manner.

It’s important to be mindful of the nonverbal communications you are sending to your networking friends, to potential clients and other people you meet. You ARE your “brand.” Bring your personal touches and creativity to each event. Make sure you wear your brand in the most favorable way.

When someone hands you their business card, (whether you want it or not), treat it with respect. Take a few intentional moments to read it, comment on it, if appropriate, then put it in whatever pocket you’re putting the “possible future contacts” cards in or the pocket that contains all the contacts that you are sure you have no interest in contacting. Never just shove it in your pocket or purse.

Never invade someone’s personal space. Standing too close or too far away may make them feel uncomfortable. On an average, if anyone is closer than 18 inches, you may find them backing up or looking for an excuse to move on.

Be a “committed listener.” If you have a sincere interest in the person you are talking with, listen for clues that might help you keep the conversation going. Leil Lowndes, tell us, “If you can spot these words and topics, you can redirect dull, forgettable small-talk conversations toward things that people actually want to talk about.”

Overall, the perception of untrustworthiness, cleanliness (bad breath and body odor), lack of charisma and more is what detracts from your brand’s personal curb appeal. Be interesting. Be noticeable. Be friendly and personable.

Ineffective brand curb appeal undermines success! Jazz up your personal presentation of you!

Your curb appeal doesn’t matter what YOU think about it. . . it only matters how others perceive you.

BONUS Articles: When You Shake Hands. . . Really Shake Hands!
What About Business Cards. . .

netHQCopyright © 2011 – Larry James. Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. Larry James presents networking seminars nationally and offers Networking coaching; one-on-one or for your Networking Group! Invite Larry James to speak to your group! His latest book is, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “Networking HQ!”

commentSubscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

letsbefriends2

Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Authors & Speakers” BLOG at: http://www.AuthorsandSpeakerNetwork.wordpress.com/

Blog at WordPress.com.