Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Networking is not for the "tender heart!"

I was in London last week for meetings and in the evening was by myself. I am not one to sit in my room and watch movies and have room service. I like to go out and about and meet people. Yes, I said meet people. New, exciting people that don't know me and I don't know them. Now again, I have written about this in my book "Living with no balance and Loving it," and still I receive feedback from people that they would never go out alone as a woman, especially a married woman and meet people. It would feel too much like they were trying to get picked up. I couldn't disagree more. I meet the most interesting people and have connections all over the world that have led to friendships and new business opportunities.

So in London the same story played out. I went to a hotel I know very well, went into the bar where I know the bartender and sat at the bar and ordered a drink. Within 5 minutes I had met a couple from the states, a travel agent from Saudi, and a British investor who lived in the neighborhood. When I sat down they were all there but no one was talking to each other until I got the conversation moving. Within minutes it was like a group of friends who met for a drink.

Did I get any business from this - YES! I have already connected with one of the people I met and we are exchanging emails and discussing future business.

If you are in sales, marketing or communications I would highly recommend taking your social networking skills outside with "real people." It is interesting, fun and creates human connections versus "friend requests."


TKirwan said...

As a GM I do this everyday and it absolutely works! Hotel events, lobbies, bars and restaurants are some of the best networking environments imaginable.
Also I like to "hang" out at concierge throughout the day because I not only get to meet guests but get into their agendas and "in the know" experiences that I can arrange having been in Boston for 30 years. Look forward to exploring these techniques in Cancun TKirwan

Cindy Novotny said...

You are my kind of GM and these concepts work everywhere - I am in Mexico right now making them work! Keep up your great attitude and you and your hotel will always be successful.