Effective Networking: Turning Conversations into Relationships

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This past Wednesday, Amy Dinning and HRDQ-U hosted a free webinar entitled, Effective Networking. Dinning is a  Learning and Development Manager of ARRIS, with extensive experience working with all organizational levels setting the strategy, creating, promoting, and delivering talent, leadership and learning solutions designed to support the organization’s business plan. She is passionate about creating an interactive and enjoyable environment that supports learning and growth. Her undergraduate degree is a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration from Grove City College.

Networking is a key-life skill whether you are employed inside of a company, running your own company, looking for a new position, and/or seeking new information or knowledge. Many people are comfortable with networking and understand how to network- but many people are not. We can all use practice and tips on how to best make networking work for you and the other person.

Over 450 people registered to participate in this webinar. If you missed it, click here.

“Amy did a great job presenting the information in a clear, concise, and positive manner.  High energy presentation while creating an interactive environment.”

“Networking can be an abstract skill for many.  Dinning did a fabulous job of bringing the components of networking together with enough structure to assist those who have had little to no experience networking with others.  Additionally, this is great information for folks who have become tethered to their electronic devices and have distanced themselves from regular conversation.”

“Amy is one of the best presenters I have ever seen in virtual learning. She makes all audience participate and get involved. She uses the virtual tool with simplicity and very effectively.”

The Learning Objectives of the session were as follows:

  • To develop an understanding of the value and benefit of networking
  • To gain insight and skills in effective networking
  • To learn about various forms of networking
  • To gain confidence in his/her networking abilities
  • To create a plan to develop your networking skills and abilities

So what exactly is networking? Dinning stated, “Networking is building productive relationships for business and personal purposes.” Is that what it means to you?

She used this quote next. “A relationship is only as strong as the two people in it.” Take a minute to think about that. It’s impossible for a relationship to be a one way street, right?

Next we talked about the value of networking. Using the interactive chat box, many participants listed their values. Some of them were:

  • Gain new information
  • Gain new connections
  • Broaden our horizons
  • Enrich our lives
  • Find an answer to a question or problem
  • Get other people’s viewpoints
  • Discover new friends
  • Find out more about a target company
  • Career development
  • Learning and growing
  • Priceless

It is important to understand the Do’s and Don’t of networking. While many of these are learned by experience or over time, it was great to have a subject matter expert leading the webinar to help us proactively.

  • DO Consider every opportunity as networking
  • DO Always be prepared
  • DO Focus on the other person
  • DO Ask how you can help
  • DO Be gracious
  • DO Be positive
  • DO Add value
  • DO Follow up


  • DON’T Do all of the talking
  • DON’T the world with your information
  • DON’T Expect someone to give you all of their contacts/information
  • DON’T Ask for something unreasonable
  • DON’T Make it all about you
  • DON’T Don’t be late for a function or meeting

Another key piece of the networking puzzle is to have an elevator speech on-hand. This speech should be 30 seconds to 1 minute and should include your name, professional identity, experience, strengths and what you are looking to gain from the networking contact.

It is important to understand how to network at different events, too. For more on that, plus how to network effectively, gain confidence and create a development plan for networking, click here.

“Be the Type of Person You Want to Meet”…make connections, follow through with any meetings, show openness, establish rapport & more!

Sign up today to make sure you don’t miss the next free webinar!

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