Communicating confidently is important to succeed in any line of business—especially when meeting someone for the first time, yet many are uncomfortable talking to unfamiliar faces.
Think back to the last time you introduced yourself, perhaps in a meeting or at a networking event. Did you look new faces in the eyes as you spoke and stood with confidence? Were you able to engage others in a lively conversation while actively listening? Could you recall the names of the people you recognized, but hadn’t seen in a long time?
If the answers to any of these questions was no, you more than likely lack confidence when meeting new people—and rightly so. Without the proper tools of engagement, talking to strangers can seem downright scary. Dale Carnegie said, “Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.” In other words, you can put your fears to rest by preparing and practicing for the next opportunity to introduce yourself.
Consider which skills, unique talents, strengths, experience and connections you have to offer so you can develop a personal value proposition. Similar to a 30-second ‘elevator speech,’ a personal value proposition is a ‘commercial’ that says who you are, what you’re looking for/what you do and how you can benefit a company or organization. Practice it with family members, colleagues or by yourself until you can say it confidently and succinctly.
Knowing your value proposition means you won’t choke when you meet someone who could be very valuable to you. Equally important to making a meaningful connection is to, ‘Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves,’ which is Dale Carnegie’s 7th Human Relations principle. Ask new contacts questions about their roles and what they are most passionate about to demonstrate your genuine interest in them.
The ability to communicate confidently is critical in today’s complex business environment. The more people we meet, the more knowledge and valuable connections we stand to gain. The tools required to communicate with confidence including a proven formula to remember names—can be learned in just three days. Click here to learn about Strictly Business: The Dale Carnegie Immersion Seminar, a rapid yet results-driven course.