As we attend networking opportunities, we find that most of them revolve around food and drink. It is true that food brings people together. Just think back to the last few social gatherings at your house and ask yourself, where does everyone congregate? In the kitchen! We are so accustomed and comfortable with socializing around food and with food, that we have allowed some bad habits to creep in.
Here’s the scenario: You’re at a networking event that has some wonderful hors d’oeuvres that look mighty tasty. Since you’re not in any big conversation, and you’re feeling a little hungry, you go and grab a plate of those hot-wings and other tasty treats. As a right handed person (which most of us are), you hold the plate in your left hand and proceed to chow down, using your right hand to grab the food and shovel it in your mouth. Towards the end of the evening, you realize that nobody has really come around and struck up any conversation with you and you think to yourself… what is wrong with these unsociable people?
What really happened is that you isolated yourself from the room. Anyone that was paying any attention to you at all, noticed how you were eating your food. Nobody wants to walk up to someone who is eating with their right hand and introduce themselves. Why? Because they know that the introduction leads to a handshake and they don’t want to shake your hand that has been all over your food and in your mouth. There are frequent times when I see someone doing this and they go even farther and lick each and every one of their fingers… to get them, clean. This individual will find the evening to be one where it is hard to connect with people. Not only will people not want to approach you, but they will not want to bring someone over and introduce them to you for the same reasons. Not only are they personally uncomfortable with your habits, but they are concerned for the person that they want to introduce to you.
The bottom line… carry your plate of food in your right hand and eat with your left. Just remember this: Protect your right hand, so people feel that you are consciously being considerate of them. If you’re going to network, network with intention and purpose and you will reap the rewards of standing out in a crowd… in a good way.
With Christmas and New Years coming fast, we will have plenty of networking opportunities that will have drinks of all kinds, available. This is always welcomed, especially because of all the talking that we do while networking. Now, whether you think that toting a drink around the room makes you look more sophisticated or whether you just need to quench that thirst, there is a definite rule that everyone should know about drinks and networking. Don’t carry your drink in your right hand.
Now, I know that most of you are complaining right now, saying, “… but I’m right handed, it’s only natural for me to carry my drink in my right hand.” Even so, we must train ourselves to carry our drink in our left hand. Most drinks “sweat” and the outside of the glass gets wet from the condensation. This means your hand gets wet. Now, if you had the glass in your right hand, this is what happens:
A perfect connection for you approaches and wants to introduce themselves to you. They say “Hello” and extend their hand to shake. You leave them hanging for a moment while you switch your glass into your left hand, proceed to wipe your hand on your shirt or pants ( trying to get it as dry as possible) and then shake their hand. You think that you were smooth, but what you just did was slime them with a wet, cold and clammy hand.
After people catch on that this is your M.O., they will stop coming up to you at events and they surely will not bring people over, to introduce to you. Carry your drink in your left hand to avoid this common mis-hap. Also take note, that with your drink in your left hand, your right hand is free to not only shake hands, but also to reach into your shirt/jacket pocket or purse for your business card. Be intentional; know how your actions will help or hurt your networking.
First off, I have to say that the 11:11 phenomenon is one that I experience on a regular basis and I have to blame Leo Corley for that. Once he shared with me that he saw 11:11 all around him… I couldn’t stop seeing them. Now, as 11:11:11 on 11/11/11 approaches, I felt I had to do a little tribute and put a countdown timer on my blog for us. Here’s to you Leo!
Well, this week was my oldest daughter’s first day of “Big School,” as she likes to call it. She is a brand new Kindergartner. It was kind of surreal because we went about our normal routine… getting ready for school, etc. The only exception is that instead of going to the day care, we went down the street to the bus stop. I guess this is why we didn’t have any tears or anything; we have been doing the “school thing” for a while now. Maybe if this was the first time she was going anywhere, then we might have been a little weepy. I’m very proud of her… and of Mommy… for being such big girls. 🙂
A friend of ours had her birthday just the other day and we were invited to partake in a scavenger hunt. Kim Lloyd’s husband, Chris, divided up the people into different “teams” and were were supposed to follow all the directions that were in time released envelopes. It was very well put together and a lot of fun. Thanks Chris Lloyd, for all your hard work in putting on a fun event for your wife!
After we were all done with the scavenger hunt, I was going through all the pictures and video and as it made me laugh out loud (LOL), I felt I needed to share our fun-filled time with everyone else. You can see in the video, all the silly things that we had to do. We didn’t win at the party, but later we found out that we should have… due to the winning team not following all the directions! At least we know the truth! 😉
Today in church, we had a great lesson from our Pastor, David Fleming. In our church, we talk about the process that we should go through as a Christian… “Know, Grow & Go!” You can “Know” God, but that isn’t enough. In fact, in the Bible it states that “even the demons ‘knew’ who Jesus Christ was”… but that didn’t get them anywhere, did it? Today, he focused on the “Grow” part of that. Max Lucado can be quoted as saying, “God loves you just the way you are, but He refuses to leave you that way. He wants you to be just like Jesus. ” This is the “Grow” part of the equation. What does it take to “Grow?” Watch this video and I’m sure that it will convict you. I was glad I was in church to hear this message! [vimeo]http://vimeo.com/27977769[/vimeo]
PRESENTATION: “How to Become a Master Networker”
… at the Tomball Chamber of Commerce First Friday Networking Luncheon
I wanted to give a special thanks to Bruce Hillegeist, the staff and the board of the Tomball Chamber of Commerce for allowing me to speak to all the members and guests about “How to Become a Master Networker.” The Tomball Chamber is very special to me because this is the first Chamber that I ever joined and took part in. This chamber is an example of how a community comes together in a warm, welcoming and friendly way. I am very excited to share what I have learned over the years with all of my peers.
DATE: August 5, 2011
TIME: 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
LOCATION: The Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd (entrance on FM 2920 across from Concordia Lutheran High School) ****LOCATION CHANGE********
RSVP: $15 for members, $17 if invoiced
RSVP to: 281.351.7222 or [email protected]