Three networking tips to build your professional network

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Busy coffee shop

Ten Thousand Coffees provides individuals with a comfortable environment to introduce themselves before meeting in person.

Written by Dave Wilkin, Founder of Ten Thousand Coffees, @10kcoffees

  1. Different ways to network – 1 to 1 vs events

    Traditionally, people are told that the best way to network is to attend events. Unfortunately, being thrust into a room full of hundreds of individuals and being told to shake hands and chat with others is something that most people find incredibly intimidating. This is especially true for anyone who is shy about meeting new people. A great resource to build more meaningful networks is Ten Thousand Coffees because it provides individuals with a comfortable environment to craft their introduction before meeting in person. Setting up a one-on-one meeting also means you don’t get caught up in the congestion of a networking event.

  1. Networking should be mutually beneficial

    The most successful meetings result in mutually beneficial outcomes, and the best way to foster a mutually beneficial outcome is by finding a way you can add value to the person you are speaking with. The best way to do this is to find mutual topics of interest. Suddenly you have something in common with that person and can speak to them as a peer. Remember, it’s about not just about what you are looking to gain, but also what you can offer.

  1. The simpler the better

    Everyone needs to take a deep breath and realize that we’re all in this together. The best form of networking happens simply and without lofty expectations – just an open mind, the willingness to have a conversation and the knowledge that it might turn into a mutually beneficial relationship.