The best networker I have ever met

Dec 18, 2017 | Blog, Insight, Marketing, What We Do

If you dread networking events, learn from the best. Here’s our insider tips on how to excel at networking…

Working for many years in professional services I have attended more networking events than I would care to count. Conferences, client events, forums; I’ve endured more than my fair share of terrible handshakes, lukewarm prawn blinis and stilted conversations.

Most of us don’t relish the thought of exchanging pleasantries with strangers in the interests of business development, and many people really don’t manage to work the room with any purpose or tangible outcomes.

The best networker I ever met was someone I used to bump into at industry get togethers. We hadn’t directly worked together (he was a training consultant too) but we had a few contacts in common. He made such an impact at these events that I analysed what it was that he did so that I could pass it on to others in my training. Here’s what I noticed about him.

The best networker got over himself…

He didn’t let his awkwardness get in the way of saying hello to people. He wasn’t the most confident person in the room but he knew that most people there had come to meet others so he introduced himself to anyone on their own and would confide in them that events like this didn’t come easy to him either but there was strength in numbers!

He found strength in numbers

His generosity of spirit was endearing and he would encourage his newly found contacts to step into the breach with him and meet new people together.

He asked about me!

The best networker seemed to really enjoy finding out about people. Whether it was a tactic or not his curiosity about my job and career history was compelling, and I felt, genuine.

A lot of the questions people ask at these events are the same such as “where do you work?” and “what do you do?” He asked thought-provoking, interesting questions, more like “why do you do the job you do?” and “tell me something about yourself that will surprise me”.

Become a confident networker

Learn  techniques to make meaningful contact with the people you really want to meet.

A practical session for up to 30 people

He talked positively about his work

He was passionate about his own work. If the conversation turned to what he did, his enthusiasm was infectious and made me want to experience whatever it was he was doing at work!

The best networker didn’t try to sell anything. Ever.

He did not ever try to sell anything. He may have talked about his job but he at no point tried to steer conversations around to what he might be able to do for me. He understood that his purpose was making connections, not selling.

He was a connector

He was altruistic. He was more than happy to introduce people to each other if it was of benefit to them. He would put people in contact with others he had met in the same industry. He didn’t differentiate between those people that might be useful to him one day and others that were unlikely clients.

He was memorable

In summary he put the effort in with other people without putting his own needs first. He was authentic and memorable for all the right reasons. Ultimately, he is someone I would be very happy to introduce to others and, if I ever meet someone who is looking for his specific expertise, I have no hesitation in recommending him.

Start our online cross selling course today

Cross Selling is a skill that, once mastered by engineering and professional services executives, can have a radical impact on business growth.

The interactive e-learning is designed to help you uncover new opportunities with existing clients.

Questas Cross Selling


Our Professional Services Cross Selling Training is online today, so now you can start honing your cross selling capabilities in just 30 minutes.

Start here

BD Training in Law Firms: Overcoming Barriers and Driving Effectiveness

In my two decades of training lawyers in the art of selling, I've witnessed both triumphs and pitfalls. Let’s dissect why traditional Business Development (BD) training often falls short and uncover what truly propels success in law firms. Barriers to Effective BD...

You win some, You lose some, You decide!

In the competitive world of law firm business development, the adage "you win some, you lose some" rings truer than ever. It's a landscape where victories and setbacks often go hand in hand. But what separates the successful firms from the rest? It's not just luck,...

Bridging the Gap: Legal Education vs Practical Business Development Skills

The legal profession is undergoing a transformative shift, and as law firms navigate the complexities of reduced client loyalty, greater pressure on fees and a fight for talent, the need to bridge the gap between traditional legal education and practical business...

Effective BD Meetings

In the competitive landscape of business development, your initial meetings with potential clients or new contacts at existing clients are pivotal moments. These interactions can either pave the way for years of collaboration or leave your firm with no work at all. At...

Tools for Difficult Client Conversations

SUMMARY This episode looks at the inevitability of difficult conversations happening with clients and how we manage them so as not to damage (and even improve) relationships. In this episode, Gary has an EASY chat with his Questas colleague Paul Brady about what to do...

The Importance of Well Trained Leaders

SUMMARY Business development and client relation management is part of a trinity with leadership and management. That’s the glue that holds organisations together that Gary will be discussing this week on Work Winning Ways. Find out why training in business...

The Right Way To Win And Maintain Clients with Frank Lippert

Summary On this episode Gary speaks to Frank Lippert - one half of the PSM (Professional Services Marketing) Podcast. Frank is based in Sacramento California and in this discussion they look at the differences in marketing and business development between the UK and...

Winning More Than Your Share Of The Pie

Summary On this episode Gary speaks to Mark Anders, who is an Operations and Framework Director at Mace. Mark tells a great story about how he came to be doing what he does today (you would never guess!). He shares his many years experience in managing Client...

An Interview with Gurminder Sagoo, Client Director WSP Middle East

Summary This is a fascinating interview with someone who has worked in the Middle East for more than 10 years. Gurminder shares some insights about winning work in the region as well as busting some myths about how the building industry works. If you work in the built...

Mastering The Client Experience

Summary How do we win the right kind of work from the right kinds of clients? This week on Work Winning Ways, Gary brings you an episode from a series of webinars about how you can master the client experience. Find out how you can win over clients, build and maintain...

Get in touch