Introverted? Here Are The Networking Hacks You Need Right Now

Introverted? Here Are The Networking Hacks You Need Right Now

November 7, 2022

Introverts need a rebrand.

There’s a fundamental misunderstanding of the personality type that conflates their core characterization with shyness, which is simply inaccurate.

“The introvert gets their energy from within, while the extrovert is charged up by people, places and stimuli outside of them,” Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, Ph.D, a certified speaking professional, executive coach, and author told PsychCentral.

She continued by saying introverts lean into secludedness and require alone time to recharge. “They let their fingers do the talking, opt for email over telephone and like to express ideas in writing because it gives them a chance to self-reflect.”

Among leadership archetypes, often extroverted traits are relegated to the most successful. But introverts are capable of attaining incredible business success as well.

Despite the misconception, there is truth to adage “your network is your net worth,” in that career opportunities are largely hinged on connections. But every networking journey doesn’t have to look the same.

Despite the dread that the thought of professional mixers may strike in the hearts and minds of introverts everywhere, there are ways to genuinely grow a Rolodex. Here’s how.

Devise a strategy ahead of attending networking events.

In an episode of her professional development podcast MyTaughtYou, Myleik Teele suggests doing some research on who’s likely to be there. If the event has been posted across social channels, check the comments and likes and corss reference who has enagaged. Then do a bit of research on their professional backgrounf and prepare a few loose talking points on how to likely connect with them if an in-person encounter happens.

Aim to attend networking events alone.

I know it’s really easy to want to enlist the support and comfort of a friend when attending a networking event, but there’s a possibility that the opportunity to connect with new people could evolve into just a catch-up session with your buddy.

There’s a high chance there are other introverts in the room that feel slightly awkward and are likely looking to have a meaningful one-on-one exchange with someone. That person could be you.

Visualize the event going well.

It may sound hokey but there’s scientific backing that supports the manifestation and visualization.

A favored practice among athletes, champions like Muhammad leveraged visualization as a tactic to make space for the work that was required to win. His famous quote was “If my mind can conceive it and my heart can believe it – then I can achieve it.”

Adopting the same mentality for networking can lead to doing wonders for preparing the mind to engage, connect and inspire others. Tactically, this looks like writing down affirmations, putting them in a place where they’re visible to you, and keeping them in mind even as you shake hands and smile.

Keep the conversation on your own turf.

As pointed out earlier, introverts tend to be stronger communicators in one-on-one settings, in written form or even via audio messages. Using these tactics to your advantage to keep the conversation going with people you met in person can be the key to forming genuine connections. Sending a thoughtful email recalling something specific about the in-person exchange can be a great way to build a relationship. For instance, mentioning how much you liked the color of that person’s outfit in your follow up email can quickly put a smile on their face, and incline them to stay connected.

Hope this helps!

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