Category Archives: Conferences

Things relating to conferences and networking events

One hour’s free coaching

I bloody love talking about this stuff. The whole reason I got into networking coaching was because I was doing it for free my whole life:

It’s what I would corner people at parties for – “Oh, you’re trying to get a job? Here’s what you should be doing” “You’re in a band? Here’s how you can get noticed”

Because my landlord doesn’t accept Good Karma in lieu of rent (SO unreasonable), at some point, I had to stop doing all my coaching for free.

But sometimes, I still sneak some free in.

A perfect example? When I’m interviewed.

I recently spent a really fun hour taking to Jordan Harbinger for The Art of Charm podcast. Their tagline is “Where Ordinary Guys Become…

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Exactly What to Say When You Walk Up To A Stranger at an Event

Within my career to date, it was the bravest move I’d ever made. Or maybe just the scariest.
Part of me couldn’t believe I was about to say this – to a TOTAL stranger. Someone I’d never spoken to before.

And at one of these events!
The kind I knew I should be at, but was terrified of. I’d only gone because my buddy Steve had said he would chum me. Then he got held up at work, but I hadn’t discovered this until I was outside the door. And I figured…well, I’m here. And I really need to meet some of these people.

After what felt like HOURS (but was more likely five minutes), I made the decision to do it. I spotted my target… walked up. And SAID IT…

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When it’s OK to Walk Up To A Stranger…And When It Isn’t

I’m pretty sure it’s because of six year old girls that we all fear this.

You know the deal: you’re in the sunny schoolyard. You skip up to your two friends, excited to tell them the FUNNIEST thing that Stephen Henderson just did by the swings – when they turn to you, one of them screwing up her mouth, then saying,

“Sorry. Private con-ver-saaaation”.

Crushed, you slink away, feeling the hot burn of humiliation in your chest.

I actually don’t remember a specific incident where this happened, but the fact that imagining this scenario just now has given me such a visceral, physical shame reaction, tells me that it definitely did.

When you’re in a crowd – even if it’s a networking event or a conference, where protocol says it’s totally fine to walk up to strangers and introduce yourself – knowing who it is and isn’t ok to approach can take you right back to that hot summer afternoon.

What if you walk up and start talking – and they give you…

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If You Hate Going To Networking Events, Here’s How Not To

It’s kind of a stupid thing for me to say. It might sound like I’m trying to put myself out a job. But it’s just true:

I hate going to networking events.

There.

Sometimes, they’re unavoidable for me. Maybe it’s been organised by a friend; perhaps a business buddy wants to meet me at one. Sometimes I can roll with it and try and have fun – but often, I’m totally not in the mood and can think of twelve other places I’d rather be.

If this sounds like you, here’s a solution:…

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A Behind-The-Scenes Tour of my Brain Going to a Conference

When I tell people what I do, often they’ll say, “Oh I hate going to networking events!”

Here’s the thing: so do I. They can feel like everyone’s trying to sell you their thing, plus they tend to have snacks at a time meant for dinner, so my hunger gets confused.

But a conference? I bloody love a conference. Have done since I started going to student radio conferences in the 90s, and now love going to ones where I meet other people like me, who are trying to use their powers for good. I love the learning. I *LOVE the meeting people. I love that sometimes, I get to show off a bit.

But, in spite of of all that, I kind of emotionally go through the ringer before each one.

This weekend, I’m at World Domination Summit – which, while it sounds like a Lex Luthor/Doctor Evil meetup, it’s actually talks, meetings and mini-events for 3000 entrepreneurs, who are all trying to make the world a better place.

So, in celebration, here’s a behind-the-scenes peek at my brain, in the run-up to going to, and at the start of, a conference…

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PART TWO: The Simple Two-Minute Trick That’s A GAME-CHANGER for your Business Or Career [includes templates]

Now that I’ve told you why always sending a “nice to meet you” email is the KEY to easy, fun and effective networking, let me show you what one actually looks like.

Let’s go back to the example from the previous explanation blog – you meet Janet at a conference in Sudbury and learn that she works for Google and has a new pug dog. Let’s say you discuss her dog, and the fish sandwiches.

I’ll write out how the email could look, then break it down for you. At the bottom, I’ll put a template that you can copy, paste and then fill in the blanks.

Subject: Sudbury conference / Obama Pug…

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The Simple Two-Minute Trick That’s A GAME-CHANGER for your Business Or Career: Part ONE

Have you ever said, “I hate networking”?
Chances are, you have – if not out loud, then quietly to yourself through gritted teeth, as you walk into a work event.

Here’s the thing: most of what you hate about networking? Isn’t actually networking. It’s schmoozing and bragging – and it very rarely works.

REAL networking happens gently over time, and most over email.
That sounds a little less scary, right?

A fundamental rule of networking that’s effective (and actually fun) is that it’s a long term relationship – not a one night stand.

So while that first in-the-flesh meeting is important when it comes to making industry friends – just like a first date is important when it comes to having a romance – it’s what happens afterwards that makes the BIG difference to your network.
And it’s your network that’ll make the BIG difference to your business or career – and to whether you are scrabbling to find clients or your dream clients are scrabbling to work with you.

The simple two-minute trick that will build your network and make you stand out: …

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How To Get Out of an Awkward Conversation – Without Being Offensive (VIDEO)

A little break from the norm: usually, I write and make videos about how to get on well in any networking situation. Especially, how to have conversations that are actually interesting and fun – even a short chat with a total stranger. My clients and readers have had successes with this stuff, at everywhere from art shows to blind dates.
BUT
Recently I keep being asked, “What do you do when the conversation you’re in dries up? How do you get away?”. Almost every new exchange has its life span – and you might need an exit strategy, even from ones you’ve enjoyed.

So, I made you a video – with a script – for these exact situations. It features a cameo by an A List celebrity. I don’t want to give too much…

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The Huge Misconception I Held – And Why It Led To Me Launching A Business

When I was 23, I got to experience what it’s like to be a pop star.

I spent a year as the Chair of the Student Radio Association, a sort of union for student radio stations in the UK. I know, I know – it’s hardly joining Spice Girls. Bear with me.

After I got elected at the yearly AGM & conference, a load of us went for a drink. The only thing I’d done as Chair at that point was to stand on stage and give a three minute speech about why I thought I’d be good for the role. My sole competitor was not a terribly serious candidate, and I was voted in by 33 stations to three.

I arrived at the pub a little after everyone else, and plonked myself at the end of a table that had four people sitting along each side. Then, something peculiar happened…

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Why It’s ALWAYS Ok To Arrive In Your Ropiest Granny Underpants

  Sometimes, you’re up for quick thrills. But at others, you want the real deal, true love, a long-term Adventure Pal.   Depending on which of these two you’re looking for, your attitude will be pretty different. What good networking is, an why this affects it Most people who say they hate networking, hate it…

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