Saving face whilst Business Networking is a real problem
Saving face when at Business Networking meetings can become a real big problem for some.
Fact is that business networking can be a very daunting thing for those who are not used to it, it’s not necessarily the actual attending of the networking meeting but more so the “what do I say” element.
We all hear about business networking and how one group is different to another, how the benefits are better when compared to others and how if you don’t take up that empty chair in a meeting which is worth 10k in sales one of your competitors will.
The sad reality is that there are a good number of new businesses as well as existing ones which are not prepared for business networking and to be honest they should if attending such meetings, think before they speak.
Alas this is not the case for a lot of businesses, for some having a 10 minutes spot light or even a 60 seconds makes them feel on top of the world and invincible and they say things which you would never dream of.
For instance they may seemingly give the impression to know everyone who is in the public eye and they make this known to the group during their talk. They know everyone that is until someone within the group catches on and for some reason wishes to be referred to one of the public eye bods.
At this point reality kicks in and then it’s a question of saving face.
More often than not you’ll find that they don’t actually know the public eye bod at all, so how on earth are they going to control what the group thinks of them when they find out that what they actually have is a very loose connection (very possibly like everyone else in the room) with someone within the organisation like the PA as a follower on twitter, or a connection on LinkedIn.
They do this by saying that they cannot refer them at the moment because they themselves are working on a big project (it’s always a big project) with them and they wouldn’t want to compromise this or to be seen to be taking advantage by referring someone else in at this stage.
Now we hasten to add that this could well be a legitimate reason, however the problem being that we fail to see why people find it necessary to make it known who they know. We say this but in part we know the reason why - which is that some forms of business networking set targets within the groups for referrals and as such it’s this which makes attendees go overboard to keep the group happy.
People will say that networking is about people and relationships which of course is correct, but networking is not a fit for everyone and although individuals know this they will try to fit in and look towards saving face later in the vain hope they are further forwards as a result, either via an increase in contacts and/or business.
For us business networking is about business networking, it’s not about competition, it’s not about who do we know that you don’t know – we’re not into saving face because that would be just something extra to do.
Businesses who attend business networking meetings should realise that it's a long term thing and not something which needs someone's life history within the first month and if they feel that this is the case they should walk if not run away.
Do not put yourself in the position of saving face at the sake of keeping a networking group happy, because a good networking group will respect you for who you are..!