This is An Introvert’s Guide to Networking!
Now if you’re a regular listener you KNOW that I don’t like leaving my house…
And as an introvert I thrive off alone time – just Ned & I.
BUT I also run a business and even though it’s an online business – sometimes I gotta leave my house in the name of building my business.
So in today’s episode of the How I Do Content Podcast, I’m talking about networking as an introvert. Specifically how I’ve used it to amplify my marketing, build connections and grow my business.
Difference between an introvert and an extrovert
I know all the extroverts are telling you that you gotta leave your house and talk to people if you want to grow your business.
I mean, easy for them right 😉
And let me be clear there are different levels of extroversion and introversion. They live on two opposite ends of a spectrum.
The way you get and put out energy helps you determine where you fall on this spectrum – whether you’re a raging extrovert, an introverted extrovert, an extroverted introvert, a raging introvert or an ambivert.
What drains your energy and what gives you energy?
For an extrovert, networking is heaven – they are energised by being around people and they leave feeling on a high. It’s their time to shine!
But for an introvert or someone who identifies towards the introvert end of the spectrum – networking is not their idea of a good time. They are energised by being alone and often they leave networking events feeling drained or the effects hit them the next day.
I equate it to feeling like I’ve been out until 4am nightclubbing back in the day and waking up with a hangover. That’s what it feels like to me.
Benefits of Networking Events
And while yes, home is best – networking events can be pretty cool if you choose the right ones to attend.
And if you go into them clear on what you want to get from the experience and set boundaries to manage your energy and look after yourself.
When you look at the benefits of networking events it’s clear why they should be part of your business strategy…
- You get the opportunity to connect with like-minded legends and build relationships with potential biz besties or future collaborators
- It’s a great way to gain more knowledge about business in general or your specific industry – you never know what piece of information you might take away that changes the game for you.
- Your ideal customer or client could be in the same room with you and meeting them could lead to future sales for your business. Last year when I voluntarily left my house to speak at the Social Club Spotlight event here in Perth, I had 3 new clients sign up to Become a Launch Wizard because of that one event. AND the ripple effect from that event still continues to this day.
- Your next great mentor or coach could be in the same room with you. I met my business coach through a guest seminar at uni. It’s a real sliding doors moment to think about what would’ve happened if I didn’t go to that event and never met her. I probably wouldn’t have this podcast or business and Ned would be forced to be alone all day. Shocking, I know!
- You realise you’re not alone in business. It can be reassuring to be in the room with people who are experiencing the same challenges as you or who can share their lessons and learnings from similar situations. Business then doesn’t feel so much like it’s you against the world.
So my advice for attending networking events as an introvert
- Get a fellow introvert to go with you. Safety in numbers right? Because at least you’ll have each other to talk to and navigate the event with. Or if you’re feeling extra brave go and find the other introverts in the room – we’re usually the ones standing quietly off to the side.
- Give yourself plenty of time and arrive early so you can scope out the venue (aka find the toilets and escape routes). And before you enter take a deep breath and remind yourself that you’re fucking awesome.
- Take people breaks. Get outside during the breaks and have a moment to yourself (trust me, you’ll need it). Oh and leave on time – don’t hang around if you don’t want to – honour your boundaries.
- Don’t fill the day after the event with heaps of things to do. You’ll probably feel pretty dead so give yourself permission to rest and recharge from all that people-time.
- Introverts usually have an extroverted friend who has adopted them and they can be the perfect shield for networking events. But remember they’ll be doing extroverted people things so you might find yourself alone at times.
So there you have it – an introvert’s guide to networking.
I know networking events can feel fucking scary – especially as an introvert – but I guarantee you there are other people at the same event, feeling scared shitless too.
And you never know who could be in that room with you (hopefully one day it’s Harry Styles)
Be brave. Put yourself out there and share your magic ⚡️