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Mastering the Art of Effective Networking: Elevating Your Human Skills in Today's World

Most people are surprised to hear that effective networking is a cultivated skill, and all individuals have faced challenges in their networking journey.


If you find yourself struggling to approach fellow professionals or articulate the right words, it may indicate a need to refine your networking skills. Effective networking demands specific abilities, and mastering these skills is crucial for building meaningful connections in the professional landscape.


Let’s all admit that at its core, networking can be an uncomfortable activity for many.

After teaching people skills for more than two decades, I can confirm that networking is not an innate talent. How often have you received generic LinkedIn connection requests or encountered individuals who immediately pitch their services at events? Poorly executed networking is not only ineffective but can also be off-putting.


Becoming a proficient networker requires effort. While some individuals may seem naturally adept at networking, the reality is that this skill is acquired. Many in the business world, identify as introverts, and only a few are born with inherent networking capabilities. With dedication and effort, however, one can learn how to navigate the intricacies of connecting with others in a meaningful way.


Effectively reaching out to unfamiliar individuals requires stepping out of one's comfort zone. In-person networking involves real-time conversations, adding an extra layer of pressure that demands quick thinking and responsiveness.


The good news is the returns on effective networking are both financial and personal. Rather than fearing networking, viewing it as an investment in yourself and your professional journey is essential. Developing the ability to engage with others meaningfully not only enhances your professional prospects but also boosts confidence and improves interpersonal skills in everyday life.


Here are my top 5 tips for networking in 2024.


1.     Adaptability: In the dynamic world of today, being adaptable is crucial. Flexibility in your approach, conversation topics, and understanding the diverse backgrounds of individuals you meet allows for more meaningful and versatile connections.

2.     Emotional Intelligence: Understanding and managing your own emotions, as well as recognising and empathising with others' emotions, is a key relationship skill. Emotional intelligence fosters deeper connections and a better understanding of the needs and perspectives of those you engage with.

3.     Storytelling: Crafting compelling narratives about your professional journey or experiences adds a personal touch to your interactions. Sharing stories that resonate with others creates a memorable and engaging connection, making you more relatable.

4.     Strategic Follow-Up: Effective networking extends beyond the initial meeting. Developing a strategic follow-up plan, whether through personalised emails, timely calls/ messages, or sharing relevant resources, ensures that connections are nurtured and maintained over time.

5.     Digital Literacy: In today's interconnected world, being digitally literate is essential for effective networking. Understanding online platforms, social media etiquettes, and leveraging digital tools enhances your ability to connect with a broader and more diverse professional audience.


Remember, networking is not an inherent trait; it's a skill that evolves through trial, error, and refinement. Identifying areas of weakness, practicing with mock conversations, seeking feedback from friends, observing skilled networkers, and incorporating learned techniques into engagements are effective steps toward mastering this art.


Or better still, get in touch with Relatus to learn the most updated and relevant human skills and develop a plan aligned to your role /career.


Happy relationships,



Julia Palmer a respected Relational Strategist and Chief Executive of Relatus, helping you develop your relational capabilities to give you the human advantage.



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