Making The Most Of Opportunities To Connect

By: Sara Urquhart  Image by: Justin Hackworth

Alt provides an unprecedented opportunity to connect with like-minded people, potential business partners, mentors and even people who’ll become lifelong friends. Make sure you’re in the best position to make those connections by being aware of how you make the best connections.

What helps you have a really good conversation? Do you need to be well-rested and decently nourished? Remember to eat well and sleep well! Will you feel more confident if you have a well-crafted elevator pitch ? Then practice it! Will you be most comfortable if you have someone by your side to help you make introductions? If so, arrange for that.

Arrange for whatever you need to put yourself in the best position to feel confident and comfortable engaging in real conversations. If you pass out business cards to fifty people but don’t have a meaningful conversation until the fifty-first person, that one person is worth more than the previous fifty. I’d say you can feel successful if you’ve made three good, solid connections.

Be willing to embrace opportunities for connections as they arise. This requires flexibility, and may even mean missing a breakout session if you’re in the middle of making one of those great connections. Go with the flow.

Prepare to talk about yourself and your business, and please prepare to listen. If you dominate conversations and focus only on your work and projects, you’ll miss many opportunities. You might be surprised to find that your goals can be accomplished by listening to someone else’s story. You may discover an incredible resource by being a good listener, or someone who will become an incredible resource down the road. You might also find that you’re the answer they’re looking for, and that’s certainly a meaningful outcome, too.

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Eden Hensley

Marketing creative, community engagement specialist, technophile, photographer, food and wine enthusiast, and the founder and editor-in-chief of The Road to The Good Life, a lifestyle blog about appreciating and enhancing your life by being grateful for the "haves" instead of lingering on the "wants." There you will find personal stories about my life and family weaved in with real-life, achievable entertaining tips, recipes for hearty home cooked meals, and DIY projects for capturing and sharing memories. I believe the best place to swap stories is over a shared meal, preferably a Thai-meal served family style, and teach an online introduction class to Thai Flavors and host the Family Dinners at The Station supper club in San Francisco.