Meeting other professionals is a must-do for small business owners and brings many benefits from sharing knowledge to getting support and expert advice. But what is the best way to go about it? This month we thought we’d share hints and tips on how to get to know professionals, including industry experts, in an accessible way.
- Get Networking
There are huge benefits to networking. It’s a great way to build relationships with other business owners, raise your profile and share ideas.
What’s more, over the past couple of years we’ve learnt the true value of human company.
Building a network can have a really positive impact on wellbeing, making small business owners feel less isolated. You can get advice and support from each other
There are now more opportunities to network than ever before, with the chance to meet like-minded business owners both online and at face-to-face events. Networking is a great way to get to know professionals in an accessible way.
Professionals can be easily reached at networking events meaning that you can ask questions and gain knowledge there and then. You can share discussions on how to solve business problems.
However, networking doesn’t come naturally to everybody, and it can make us feel uncomfortable at times with an urge to run for the door if we don’t know anyone! The good news is you can develop networking know-how to make it work to your advantage and benefit your small business.
Here are a few tips on networking from the Better Business at Hand team.
Tips for networking success
- Have an elevator pitch prepared – You have a short time to spark interest in your business and grab people’s attention so have a short memorable description of what you do and how you can help ready to go.
- Work the room – It can be tempting to stay talking to the same person, especially if you find networking a tad uncomfortable, but you need to circulate. There is a room full of professionals you can meet who you can share expertise with and build connections.
- Do your research – If there is a list of attendees released in advance, look them up and decide if there is anyone there you would especially like to meet. This is your chance to have easy access to a potential client you could help or someone whose advice you would value.
- Connect with people – Make sure you connect on LinkedIn there and then with people you want to talk to further. Yes, give out business cards but take proactive steps on the day to stay in touch.
- Follow up – Send a message via LinkedIn or email when you return to the office to say how much you enjoyed meeting a professional you would like to build a business connection with and suggest ways you could help if relevant.
And finally, and this is a BIG ONE – just be yourself. Networking is all about people meeting people. Be your best relaxed professional self and try to enjoy the event. Networking can seem intimidating but the more you do it the easier it gets. The benefits you will get from having easy access to other professionals will be well worth the effort.
- Go to Conferences
Conferences bring together like-minded people and businesses often from the same industry or geographical area. You will get the opportunity to network and so much more at a conference.
Delegates can hear about the latest developments, gain industry insight into trends and in the exhibition space, can see what competitors are doing. However, one of the best things about conferences is the easy access you can get to professionals.
At conferences you have the opportunity to attend seminars and workshops given by guest speakers and industry experts. You can also sign-up for one-to-one sessions and social events.
Maria Pombo, Founder of Better Business at Hand, is a huge advocate for attending conferences because of the knowledge you gain and the range of professionals you can easily meet.
Maria comments “Every business sector has a particular conference for their trade and that is where you get to meet not only professionals but other competitors and potential clients too.”
If you need help with business planning or turnaround, you can meet Maria during a free 15-minute Discovery Call and find out how she can solve your business problems. Book a Discovery Call with Maria.
Here are some tips on how to meet professionals and get the most out of attending a conference.
3 top tips for making business connections at a conference
You can adopt similar tactics to the networking tips outlined above, however, there are a few more things you can do to ensure success with meeting professionals at conferences.
- Get to know the conference in advance – Look at the conference website and work out what you should attend to gain access to the best professionals for your business. This could be an event with people in your industry where you can share ideas, a face-to-face workshop given by an industry expert or a one-to-one with a service provider who can help provide a solution for your business.
- Familiarise yourself with the layout – You won’t make a good first impression with a potential professional business connection if you don’t turn up on time! Conferences can be in vast venues so it really pays to get to know the location of events you want to attend, so that if there isn’t much time between sessions, you’ll get there for the start.
- Book your sessions early – Get ahead of the game and make bookings for any events as soon as they are released. That way you stand more chance of getting slots with your preferred professionals and will avoid any disappointment. Make sure you take any questions you need answered to your session.
Not only are conferences great places to establish new connections, but they also help you to stay connected with established contacts. Don’t forget to book up for any social events. The conference dinner or drinks is a great way to enjoy easy access to professionals in a more relaxed setting and build your network.
- Meet a readymade network of professional experts
Networking events and conferences are great ways to meet professionals. However, this can be time consuming, and if you need help right now you might not know the right expert for the task. That’s where we come in – Better Business at Hand brings together a team of professional experts you can rely on for business advice.
As a small business owner, you can’t know everything. If you want to know how to grow your small business, the answer is simple – ask for help. Growing a business is really exciting and there will be lots of highs and a few lows. We’re here to help you find solutions to problems and answer those awkward business questions.
What’s more, our professionals are easily accessible. Just book a free 15-minute Discovery Call with your chosen expert to find out how they can support your business. If you decide to go ahead with an advice session, simply book an appointment of 15, 30, 45 or 60 minutes direct with your consultant.
Our professionals have experience running their own businesses and can help you solve your business problems and challenges. Meet the team!
Meet the professionals who are ready to support your business
Stirling Austin specialises in online growth and can help with your website questions and challenges. Book a Discovery Call with Stirling.
Ivelina Delcheva can advise on operational improvements to help your business grow. Book a Discovery Call with Ivelina.
David Peddy has 50 years’ experience building and growing businesses and can advise on customer acquisition strategies and answer general business enquiries. Book a Discovery Call with David.
Maria Pombo is a business growth and turnaround specialist and can answer questions on how to grow your business and improve your financial situation. Book a Discovery Call with Maria.
Chartered Accountant and Forensic Accountant Tim Vogel can talk you through issues regarding your accounts and insolvency matters. Book a Discovery Call with Tim.
Get the most out of your Free Discovery call
If you have a business challenge or a question that needs answering, contact one of our team to arrange a free 15-minute Discovery Call.
To get the most out of your Discovery Call, have a clear idea of what you need help with as this will help you outline any issues to the consultant. It might be an idea to jot down questions about the area you need guidance in so that our consultant can get a clear understanding and explain how they can help.
At Better Business at Hand we help small business owners solve everyday business problems.
Networking and Conferences are a great way to enjoy easy access to professionals. It really pays to do your research so that you can connect with the right people for your business.
At Better Business at Hand, we offer a readymade network of professionals, meaning you can get the help you need when you need it most.
Book a Discovery Call with one of our team.