Today, all it takes to meet new people is to scroll through a page and click a few buttons or tap on the screen a couple of times.
The age of social media continues to encourage people to establish and widen their social circles through platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Business owners and professionals looking to connect with other entrepreneurs can also turn to LinkedIn for a more specific approach.
While social media is a growing phenomenon you can’t ignore, it’s unwise to forget the importance of building connections through personal networking.
Still a Social Being
Humans still need other humans. One of the core momentums behind strong business relationships is a physical presence — something online conversations can’t provide. Even video chats fall short, despite the subtle cues of voice, facial expressions, and body language.
The energy of values, interests, and experiences can only unfold through personal interaction. Given this fact, live networking has proven to be a valuable platform for keeping businesses ahead.
Networking in Person for Success
BNI Australia, a business networking referral organisation, recommends prioritising personal networking over its online counterpart due to its exclusive benefits. For example, face-to-face networking offers memorable personal impressions ready for later follow-ups. Online acquaintances can also put a face to the name and become more familiar with your business.
Networking events are also great opportunities to discover potential clients and partners. Also, by taking genuine interest in other people, you become a valuable resource. Even if a new contact isn’t ideal, they can still refer to you to others who might be.
Effort Pays Off
Personal networking will require more effort on your part. If you’re not the extrovert type, speaking to others can be frightening. The ordeal involves physical investment and a part of your time, which can be troublesome. But the rewards that come with face-to-face networking are definitely worth it.
In the long-run, personal business relationships offer more beneficial and productive relationships. These are also stronger compared to partnerships developed online.
Remember: professional networking is not confined to the four walls of formal business events. Simply interacting with people during social events or or while waiting for the elevator can do the trick.