Real talk: I’m not a big fan of networking.
The surface-level exchanges. The small talk. The business cards. The obligatory follow-up. The whole dance feels forced, disingenuous, and usually ineffective.
I’m into something much more important, and way more fun when I meet new people—building relationships. That’s the real goal of “networking,” and that’s what I teach at The Art of Charm, my social dynamics company, where we’ve coached over 5,000 guys on building meaningful relationships in all areas of their lives. I’ve also interviewed some of the world’s leading networking experts on the top-rate Art of Charm Podcast about everything from rewiring networking ideas to overcoming the fear of rejection.
So if you’re looking to up your networking game, here are five of my favorite tips, all grounded in the latest research and my own personal experience. They’re also contrarian at times— ideas that are at odds with your run-of-the-mill networking. They’ve worked for me, and I know they’ll work for you, so enjoy!