When done right, networking can be incredibly beneficial to your real estate career. When done wrong, it could possibly hurt your business, and no one wants that.
So let’s talk about the 7 DON’TS of networking. The next time you find yourself at a networking event, make absolutely sure you don’t do these 7 things!
Don’t Network Before Updating Your Online Presence
As soon as you meet someone, you know they’re going to look you up online. We all do it, right? Do you really want them to find outdated information, unprofessional photos, or worse: not find anything?
Make sure that you’ve checked all of your social media profiles and your website. You want to make sure that you look like the experienced, well-qualified, and professional real estate agent that you are.
Don’t Try to Meet Every Single Person
The point of networking is not to say hello as many times as possible, hand out your entire stack of business cards, and collect others’ like they’re some kind of trading cards.
In order to really network effectively, you need to work on establishing a relationship with the individuals that you meet. You’re not going to be able to do that if you’ve only got 60 seconds with them. Do you think that after a brief meeting, they’re going to remember you? Are you going to remember them?
Go for quality over quantity. Spend a good amount of time with a few people, versus a little bit of time with a lot of people.
Don’t Bring Friends
Networking events are intimidating, especially if you don’t like networking or don’t feel like you’re very good at it. This is when we ask our friends to come along and keep us company, right?
It seems like a good idea, but it’s not going to help you with networking, which is the whole reason you’re going to a networking event. You’re going to end up spending the whole time talking to the person you already know, instead of meeting the other people at the event.
Show up without bringing an entourage. You’ll get out there and make new connections.
Don’t Interrupt Others
I don’t know about you, but I find that getting interrupted is really irritating and not fun at all. It also makes me think that the interrupting individual is pretty rude. How do you think you’re going to look to the people you meet if you’re interrupting everyone?
Be patient and actively listen to the person who is speaking with you. It will show them that you are respectful, and they will appreciate it.
Don’t Make it All About You
It’s one thing to be enthusiastic about yourself and your company. It’s another thing to be overly enthusiastic, to the point that you’re not talking about anything else. You don’t have to avoid talking about yourself entirely, but modesty is key.
Don’t Spam Everyone with Cards
If you hand your card to every single person you say “hello” to, chances are a bunch of them are going to wind up in the trash. And I don’t know about you, but I pay to print my business cards, and I’m not trying to throw them away. Handing them to anyone and everyone who hasn’t even asked for it is silly.
That doesn’t mean you should be stingy with your cards, either, but you should at least build a rapport with someone before slinging cards their way.
Don’t Forget the Follow Up
What’s the point of networking in the first place if you’re not going to follow up? You should follow up to maintain that connection that you’ve made. How you follow up is dependent on the person and the situation, but you should never forget this very important step.
It can literally render all of your hard work useless!