You may have heard the proverb: “To go fast, go alone. To go far, go together.”
Personally, I believe this is true. Recently, I attended a sharing session at the National Library, where Singaporean Farid MN, CEO of Walletku (based in Indonesia) shared his life’s journey. One of the things he shared was on how he got to where he is, was because of the connections he had made throughout the years in business. Through those connections, which what he termed as ‘Social Capital’, helped him and his team (as well as the people he got connected) to move forward. Everyone succeeded.
The challenge is, not everyone is ‘ready’ to meet with new people. Making that first move to connect with someone may be a challenge for some, especially if you are an introvert. In this article, I share ‘3 Ways to Creatively Connect with Anyone (Almost) Instantly”:
Step 1: Have a ‘YES, AND’ Mindset
The ‘Yes, And’ principle originated from theatre improvisation, where it functions as a catalyst to help improvisers connect with each other and performed on stage without having any SCRIPT! This principle is highly applicable beyond the arts too. I have succcessfully implemented this principle in my creativity workshops and speaking engagements. In a ‘Yes, And’ mindset, at least two elements are present: (a) the willingnesss to explore possibilities and (b) the willingness to eliminate negativity
When these two elements are present, even when you are introvert, you are mentally ready to take the unknown next steps - i.e. to attend event and connect with new people
Step 2: Be ‘In the Moment’
At the networking event, remember to stay focus and be in the state of ‘present’. Being ‘present’ or ‘in the moment’ is when you are completely at peace with the surrounding, your mind is clear and your reflexes are fast. This is the moment when you are performing at your best - in sports, presentation, performing on stage etc.
The last thing you want to do (of in fact, avoid this thing), is when someone at the networking event asked you about your work, and you answered about last night’s World Cup match. Clearly your mind is wandering and not ‘In the Moment’. That will definitely affect your credibility and your ability to get connected with people
Step 3: Build Rapport
The moment you have prepared yourself with Steps 1 and 2, Step 3 is fairly easy. Whenever you are being approached, or when you approach someone, do these:
(a) Say ‘Hi’ and Smile: This is to show your visibility and sincerity in approaching others
(b) Offer handshake: This is important because human touch affects the emotions of the other person. This is also an opportunity to ‘test out’ the other person’s personality types. However, do note on cultural differences, especially in the Muslims countries or among Muslims; no touching is allowed unless they are family members
(c) Introduce your name and ask for theirs: Nothing sounds more important for the other person than uttering his/ her name correctly. This also shows the effort you put in to know their names. You will feel appreciated
(d) Remember to look into their eyes: Just like smiles and handshakes, eyes play at important role to connect human at emotions level
(e) Communicate: Start speaking and connecting with them. Don’t know what to talk about? Start by asking about their work or current projects they are in. Once both of you get comfortable, you can start asking about his/ her thoughts on current issues and just go with the flow.
Hope these pointers help.
If you need more assistance on connecting with people, do keep yourself available on Saturday 21 July 2018. Together with my business associate, Mervin Yeo, we will be conducting a half-day seminar to help shy people overcome their shyness and start get connecting with other people and build your social capital. This interactive session is held in conjunction with the on-going SkillsFuture Festival 2018.
To find out more, click the link: “How to Get Over From Being Shy”
Towards your continued success,
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