How To Get More People To Help You When Networking

Picture this.

You leave a networking event and have been overwhelmed with others wanting to help you.

Introductions they are going to make, enquiries, or suggestions of people to contact.

Unfortunately many networkers stop others from being able to help them.

And it all comes from a simple shift you make in your conversations.

Because believe it or not, others want to help you.

You’ve just got to give them chance to do so.

It’s inevitable at a networking event you’ll get asked:

“How’s business?”

It’s one of most common and unavoidable opening questions you’ll get.

But in return, you’ll likely muster up a variation of the most common response.

Something like:

“Yeah I’ve been really busy lately” or “Pretty good, super busy at the moment”.

Here’s the problem.

Whilst that response may massage your ego.

Or be what you think others want to hear.

By telling others how busy you are, this is what they hear:

“I don’t need any help.”

“I don’t need the business.”

“I’m all good.”

“If you know someone that needs us, I’m too busy to help.”

And here’s the reality:

People want to help you.

You’ve just got to give them a chance to know how.

Because let’s face it, we’re all ‘busy’.

And by saying it offers no opportunity for others to help you, or progress the conversation.

So it’s time to drop the ego.

Put down the shield you have up blocking others from helping you.

Also, you can’t be that busy because you’ve taken the time to attend the same event they have...

Here’s what they’d rather hear.

Something real.

Something they can work off to help or build the conversation from.

Something you can replace that copy and paste response with.

Something like:

  • “I am busy - but working through a couple of challenges working on X.”
  • “Genuinely am quite busy - but am looking for support or help with X.”
  • “Could be busier - business has slowed down in this area.”
  • “Pretty quiet at the moment - have capacity to take on new clients in the X industry.”
  • “It’s ok - we’re looking to grow with this service/product in the business.”

Immediately, responses like this open up the conversation.

They can start to consider ways to offer any help, insights, or possible connections.

And whilst you may think you are super busy, we all have challenges.

If you don’t, I need your secret.

It could be a supplier issue. Or sales slowing down in a particular area. Or an issue with a staff member.

There are many ways others can help.

It doesn’t always need to be about new business or sales from networking.

You never know, they may even have the same problem as you, or experience navigating it themselves.

Responses like the above offer humility and vulnerability.

The keys to unlocking a quality conversation.

And if you are super busy (full marks for networking at a time when many think they don’t need to) - be specific and share what you’re busy working on.

They may know ways to help you seek out more of that!

The Wrap Up

So, next time you catch yourself about to tell someone how incredibly busy you are.

Think, will they be able to help you with that information?

Because remember; people want to help you.

It might be hard to believe because to this point you’ve not given them a chance to.

But try it at your next event.

When you’re asked; “how’s business?”

Take a breath, and offer as response that’ll open up the conversation.

One that’s authentic.

That’s where true connection starts.

Happy networking.

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A practical self-paced online course for those new to networking.

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