The majority of experts would say yes to this question and many kindly offer free advice on this subject, which is awesome, especially if you are new to networking. But….maybe, just maybe there is more to it, depending on the type of networking events you attend. Let’s take a closer look.
So, if you tend to network across many groups, such as the extremely popular FSB meetings currently taking place all over the UK then a sharp approach would be effective. These meetings are different in the way that they are not a club with the same members who attend weekly, monthly etc, but rather more towards the ad-hoc approach. In instances such as these, professional advice would be - Be clear who you are and what you do, the benefits of working with or buying from you and throw in a testimonial if possible. This approach would also work well in networking organisations such as 4N and BNI.
There is however another point of view which would apply to groups like CAP Business Clubs, where the same people attend weekly, therefore are very familiar with each other. In these cases, we find the around the table/zoom introductions can be put to other usage. For example, just this morning a member at CAP Thursday Club used his intro to update the group on the progress of his business and asked for advice on storage for his stock. Another member offered advice on website traffic. You get the drift. There are exceptions to this though, for example - when other businesses visit or if you are new to the club.
To summarise - For the most part a well thought out clear, concise introduction is and should be executed exactly as the experts teach. But keep in mind, I believe (and it’s only my opinion) we should also be prepared to have a much more flexible approach depending on circumstances mentioned above.
The main thing is, just get out there and do it, learn, and enjoy!
Paul James - CAP Business Clubs