With the holiday season in full swing, we hear it over and over, the holidays are a slow time of year for doing business. Ladies, we are here to tell you: Don't you believe it! With all the holiday parties, events, and family visits, the holiday season provides some of the best networking opportunities of the entire year.
To help you make the most of your holiday season, here are eight tips for turning Holiday Parties into Networking Goldmines:
1. Say Yes! Successful people take action, they show up
Make a list of the holiday gatherings you are invited to, and attend a few! If you're looking to fill your pipeline with new people, you'll meet them at everything from the neighborhood open house to the family gatherings, as well as those special holiday business networking events. Attending holiday events is also a good way to follow-up with the people you already know, like your clients, business acquaintances, referral partners, and friends and family.
2. Go with the a winning mindset
How often have you heard, "you can't create a positive life with a negative mind?" Say no to a negative attitude. Arrive with your best mindset and most charming mood. Otherwise, it will be obvious to everyone around you that you don’t want to be there if you have a miserable look on your face. Remember, nobody wants to associate with a party pooper, so smile and decide to have a great time.
3. Attend with goals in mind
Yes, it is a holiday party; however, when you attend any networking event you should have a set goal in mind. For example, you might want to establish three new connections that can develop into business relationships. Go in with a goal and work the room until you meet and/or exceed your goal.
4. Send out Holiday Greetings
Join in on the festivities! This time of year is a perfect time to send cards, letters, emails, and newsletters. It lets your clients and business associates know you are thinking about them. You can further leverage holiday events, by sending the people you've just met a holiday greeting card too! If you have not sent out those holiday cards as yet, read: 5 Tips For Sending Out Holiday Cards
5. Step out of your comfort zone and ask for introductions
Remember tip #3? Know who you want to meet and don't be afraid to ask your friends,
relatives, and old and new acquaintances for introductions. Leverage existing relationships and work your plan to meet and/or exceed your set goal.
6. Dress Appropriately
Remember, this is a business event, first and foremost. And, You are your business. Holiday parties are not dates. Dress as your most festive and stylish self, but refrain from flashy or too revealing attire because they look unprofessional.
7. Have fun, but don't overeat or drink
It's a party, so relax and enjoy yourself. Still, remember that this is a business event. It's fine to have a good time, but you don't need to be the life of the party. Represent your business well, at all times by keeping it professional. Don't over drink or eat. Keep it at a minimum.
8. Make Follow-up Calls
Sending emails are great but you can make a more personal connection with people by calling them, especially around the holidays! This works not just with friends and family but
with your best business connections as well. Take the extra step by picking up the phone and simply letting the people you met at the Holiday party know it was a pleasure meeting them. They will remember you for it!
MACs-iMize every opportunity to network and use holiday gathers to fill your pipeline with new contacts and to reconnect with old ones. Keep your conversations a nice mix of personal and business. Don't stuff business cards at everyone you meet. Ask interesting questions like, "How do you know the host/hostess?" "Who do you know at this event?" "What has been the highlight of your year?" "How's the family?" "What plans do you have for next year?" "How was business this year?" "What kinds of clients are you looking for these days?" Be prepared to answer these questions as well! And be your most gracious self. You might just find a goldmine of new clients during the season and in the coming year.