This is particularly relevant if you are an active networker and attending a number of meetings regularly.

Networking can be an amazing, fast track way to get more business but it can also be a waste of time if, at every meeting, you just talk the day away with people you already know.

Now I’m not suggesting that working on your relationships and getting know people better chatting over a coffee is bad, far from it, but your time and money is precious and if you want to do well in business you need to make sure you are using both effectively.

If you have a focus and a goal for each event you attend you will find your networking and the business you gain from it will shift up a gear.

So what do I mean by having a goal for each event?

To give you an idea I’ve come up with a few suggestions below:

1) Speak to, exchange business cards with and follow-up with at least one completely new business contact.

2) Have a particular product or service that you want to tell the room about (remember to sell the benefits!) and prepare an ‘elevator pitch’ and/or conversation starter that works for it.

3) Have the name and company name of a specific person that you want to connect with and ask for it during the meeting – its amazing who knows who when you start getting specific!

I could go on. Maybe you want some testimonials (video, audio or text), you want feedback on your new website, you want to do some charity work… The list goes on. When have a set focus or goal you are infinitely more likely to achieve it than going in with just a vague idea that you might do some networking.

So I challenge you to go prepared next time you network and report back with your findings.

As always I’d love to hear your experiences and thoughts on this so please join in the conversation below…