The British Chamber of Commerce Singapore hosts around 80 events a year in addition to numerous group meetings and roundtable sessions, providing plenty of opportunities to expand your network and fine tune your networking skills.
Arriving at the start of the event gives you time to get a feel for the room and allows people to come to you, rather than you having to start by interrupting group conversations. Several smaller conversations will help you to relax and before you know it, the room will have filled up without you noticing.
ASK FOR INTRODUCTIONS
The Chamber team is there to facilitate introductions between people. Don't be afraid to ask us for an introduction to a specific company or person you have seen is attending, or approach us if we are within a group - we will happily bring you into the conversation.
If you make a connection at an event it can be tempting to stick with them for the duration. Force yourself out of your comfort zone by setting yourself a goal - to meet a specific number of people in a set time period or throughout the event.
MAKING SMALL TALK
Remember you don't have to speak the entire time, listen and use well-placed insights to demonstrate intelligence rather than speaking continuously.
ACT LIKE AN EXTROVERT
When needed, even introverts can act with a little more confidence. Fake it until you make it!
Worried that you will forget the name of the person you have just been introduced to? This is likely because the voice in your head is saying "don't forget their name" and drowns out your ability to listen effectively. Avoid this dilemma by repeating their name back to them during the conversation and making a note later on their business card of where and when you met. You can then follow up by email or social media at an appropriate time.
The above tips include adaptations from a recent article by Susan Cain, author of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking.