The Uncomfortable Networker Unleashed

Top tips for the uncomfortable networker!

It is said that over 70%  of jobs and business comes from networking.  These great top tips to unleash the uncomfortable networker come from an excellent Coaching Academy CPD Event yesterday with Rasheed Ogunlaru.

I consider myself outgoing. Even so, the thought of working a room of strangers  authentically and effectively is uncomfortable. It’s funny how alternative ways to spend the time present themselves. So here are some top tips for the uncomfortable networker!

  • Arrive early. Counter intuitive right? But this way you are in the position of greeting and not breaking into groups already formed
  • Have something to say – in fewer than 10 words who you are and what you do, thats interesting. Write it down before you go and say it to your trusting mirror or even a friend
  • Make eye contact – some-people dont want to be tapped on the back!
  • Get the greeting right.  The handshake if you use it should be firm but not bone crunching.  If its a multi-cultural group handshaking might not be the thing.
  • Sm-eyes (pronounced schmize)! Deliver your greeting with a smile that reaches your eyes and isn’t looking over the shoulder to the next best person
  • Numbers. Set yourself a target of people
  • Move on graciously – if you’re getting stuck with someone telling you about model trains or the inclement weather (no offence to afionados of either discipline) say thanks and move on!
  • Celebrate. A successful networking event is part of your work and needs celebrating with new contacts and recognising new opportunities

Have fun and please share how you get on! Of course, Get in touch to discuss your coaching needs

Is coaching what I want?

What is coaching? Is it what I want? Will it work?

Here you will find answers to your questions: what is coaching, is it what I want and will it work for me. Read and reflect then  CONTACT ME!

What is it?

Coaching is a professional service where coach and client work together in partnership in a thought-provoking and creative process of exploration. The coach is like a mirror that listens, talks and observes. Noticing your habits or reactions, a coach’s presence can inspire you to self-assess and take action using your personal and professional potential.

Successful coaching is when a client learns more about themselves and takes steps forward of their own choosing from which they learn and grow.

Is coaching what I want?

These questions summarise what clients have been asking as they join me in coaching. Read them and consider if any apply to you:

    • Do you feel dissatisfied or stuck or that you aren’t reaching your full potential?
    • Do you harbour unspoken fears or worries at work or home that influence behaviours you want to change?
    • Is there a gap of where you are now to where you want to be?
    • Do you sometimes feel you don’t have the skills, resources or confidence to do what you want?
    • Are you so busy that you have forgotten what you really want?
    • Do you sometimes feel stuck and put off making decisions or fail to stick to those resolutions you have made?
    • Is it time your answers were questioned?
    • Do you need a thoroughly good listening to?

If the answer is yes to any of these question, then coaching might be very helpful for you.

Will it work?

The coach provides a safe confidential space. Their training and experience provides the framework of the process where intense listening and questions come.  Like a mirror with excellent lighting or microphone that picks up all the noise, coaching can be uncomfortable.  Clients who get the most from coaching are ready to reflect with the coach and entertain new and fresh ideas of their own making. They come to sessions with things they want to work on and are ready to try things out even if it may be uncomfortable. The coach is your partner safe and non-judgemental. She is not a prop!  These client testimonies are real and give you an idea of what ‘works’.

What happens?

Our coaching takes place over a number of pre-arranged structured confidential sessions. Our first session will be exploratory as you lay out your “map”. In subsequent meetings, the agenda is yours. The process and framework is held by your coach who may challenge you to look behind the agenda to what really matters and where new challenges lie.  My coaching complies  to the Coaching Code of Conduct which you can find here

A session usually last between 45mins and 1 hour

During coaching sessions you will make plans to take action. You will be responsible for the decisions you take.

What coaching is not

Coaching is not an advisory or therapy service. Of course, there may be some tough questions but our coaching service will not judge or assess you.

How to get the best from coaching – top tips

To get the greatest benefit from the investment you make for coaching:

    • Come to the session prepared having reflected on recent experience-make notes
    • Have an idea of a change you want to make or an area of life or work that is bothering you
    • Be honest with yourself
    • Trust yourself
    • Be ready to make a commitment to take action

I think I want to start coaching now. What do I do?

What are you waiting for? Your first step is to CONTACT ME!

We will talk over your understanding of this service and what you are hoping to get out of it. We will look at a package that best fit your needs now.

Let’s make it worth it! Make a resolution to stick to!

So, about ski jumping…

I know its the time of cricket and tennis, but you may have read in the earlier blog that I sometimes wonder about ski jumping and stretching yourself for high performance.

You see it on Winter Olympics: a young, brightly smiling, deeply concentrating sportsperson in slim lycra and sub-zero temperatures waves from the top of a high structure. They launch themselves with little apparent concern for life or limb and hurtle down a slope in a tight squat, before being launched into the air. Most land a few moments later with delicacy and skill and come to a graceful halt with their skies in a v shape, turning to wave to the crowd and see their scores. I momentarily feel for their parents and then console myself that the parents probably encouraged them. Performance for them is a matter of life and death. Once launched, there can be no doubt.

My questions are these: How do you come to know you can do a thing that for most of us would be certain death? At what point do you realise that this is the sport for you? Are there piles of dead and or broken would be ski-jumpers offering grim lessons to all trainees? Of course, part of the answer will be in training and skills development, related fitness and interest. In addition, I imagine you start with small jumps and build upwards.

All that said and done, I am guessing, a jump would have to be high enough to enable the flight and landing that keeps it safe. At this point it becomes a leap of faith that you must really really want to take! The beauty of the jump, the smiles on the faces of those that do it and even those that don’t win is testimony to how rewarding it can be.

Is this what is meant by The Stretch Zone? While we might not all aspire to the risk and splendour of ski-jumping, all of us have things we want to do that seem out of reach or make us nervous at the thought. Can we take a leaf from the books of the ski-jumpers who have the skills and have the training and know their stuff and then do it inspite of the risk!

Have you done such a thing? Please share your experiences below!