We’ve all been to a networking event and been cornered by “that” person, a networking Ninny Muggins. You know, the one whose motto is always be selling, or they’re so self-involved they have a conversation with themselves while you listen, nod, and drift. I’m here to tell you, whatever the networking experts have told you—that’s not effective networking. Before I get too high and mighty, I must admit of the six networking don’ts I’m about to share I’ve done at least four…Okay five of them.

What’s a  Networking Ninny Muggins?

Ineffective Networking Activities

Don’t be disrespectful– When you ignore, interrupt, or avoid others—it’s a sign of disrespect. Take the time to introduce yourself and listen to what others have to share.

Don’t be a sour puss, snarky, ranter person- Be happy have fun. Let Your Smile be Your Calling Card

Don’t be a total taker – It’s not all about you. As a matter of fact, the more you make it about others the more you’ll receive in return. Who Have You Helped Today?

Don’t be a phony-baloney – You’re not there to impress anybody. You’re there to make connections. Want to connect? Humble is a lot more attractive than arrogance or boastfulness.

Don’t be a card collector – If the only thing you do is introduce yourself with a 30 second elevator pitch and collect cards that end up stuffed in a drawer—you’re not networking. Networking Doesn’t End at the Event

Don’t be “that” salesperson –While it’s OK to represent your company, the best way to do that is by solving problems and that begins by listening to others needs.

Learn from My Mistakes

Like I said, been there, done that. I’m better now, not perfect, but better. At least I’m not a networking Ninny Muggins…all the time. And isn’t that what we’re supposed to do—learn from our mistakes? You know what’s even better? Learning from others mistakes. If one person who reads this improves one networking approach, then my work is done here. We don’t need any more Ninny Muggins, do we?

How Can I Help You?

I like to help people and organizations, but I have three criteria I consider before taking an assignment – I believe in what the organization stands for, I know I can help, and it looks like fun. If you have any questions, Contact Me. 

Does your business have a  management training plan? Many organizations, large and small, use my book, The New Manager’s Workbook a crash course in effective management, as the basis for their leadership development program. Check it out.