How do I make contacts at a party
Simple but effective: this is how you make new contacts on the job
People are social beings. They only feel comfortable and secure in groups, be it with friends, in a couple or with colleagues. Anyone standing alone becomes an outsider. That was already the case earlier in school and has hardly changed in professional life today. To be integrated means to be popular. Who does not want that? After all, a large professional network is important for your career. But this is precisely where an important mistake lies: Standing alone does not necessarily mean that you don't have a large network. Instead, it can be the key to one. We therefore have the best advice for you today, with which you can make new contacts in an unusual way and leave a lasting impression.
1. Loneliness makes you sick!
2. Being alone is uncomfortable for many people
3. Anyone who is alone runs the risk of falling victim to bullying
4. But being alone does not mean loneliness
5. Those who stand alone make more contacts at network meetings ...
6. ... and makes a lasting impression
7. Contacts are important for your professional success - and your happiness in life
Loneliness makes you sick!
Scientists at Harvard University did research for 75 years. They accompanied people in their "Grant Study" and "Glueck Study" throughout their lives in order to find out: What is it really that makes you happy - and what isn't? The surprising answer: health, success and money are far less important for a happy life than expected. Instead, the result was clear: Only one thing in life makes a person's happiness or unhappiness. And these are his relationships. The better a person is integrated, and we are talking about high-quality relationships, the happier they are in life. Suddenly, even poverty, illness or failure are no longer so dramatic. Conversely, all the success, the money and the health are of no use if you eke out your existence on your own.
Reading tip: "Remote Work: Telework promotes loneliness - and can be fatal"
To be alone is uncomfortable for many people
At least in our culture, it is therefore customary to show up at social events either with your partner or with friends, colleagues or acquaintances - depending on the occasion. Especially if you are unfamiliar with the other guests, you would certainly be reluctant to go to a party, Christmas party or network meeting alone. Every now and then walking alone, relaxing on the sofa or letting the sun shine on your stomach in the garden, that can be a welcome change. Shopping alone or going to the cinema, some do that too.
But who used to like to be alone in school during recess? Or would you sit down alone at a table in the canteen during your lunch break? Do you stay alone in the coffee kitchen when a group of colleagues you are unfamiliar with is exchanging ideas? You'd probably better get away quickly and enjoy your little break in "familiar" surroundings. Most people find it uncomfortable to be alone - at least when they feel they are being watched.
Those who are alone run the risk of being bullied
If you are alone, there must be something wrong with you. This conclusion is as old as humanity itself. A few centuries ago there was always the “village idiot” who was marginalized. The phenomenon would now be referred to as bullying. Mostly they were sick or handicapped people, that is, those who did not quite meet the "norm". Unfortunately, that has not changed until today: Bullying is still a major problem in schools, in the workplace and in almost all social groups.
Reading tip: "Blasphemy at work: how to deal with it"
Here, too, the victim is often “different” in some form, for example fatter than the others, from another country or simply very shy. Bullying can affect anyone and can never be justified or logically justified. The best way to defend yourself against such exclusion: never be alone. Because those who have social support are not bullied. Point.
But being alone doesn't mean loneliness
One strategy that we all learn early in our childhood in order to be happy, popular and protected from social exclusion is to avoid being alone. After all, being alone meant danger to life, when people still lived in caves and could only defy predators, storms and the like in a community. To grow old alone in the harsh world of that time was almost an impossibility. It is therefore in your genes and also in your upbringing, culture and your early childhood formation if you do not like to be alone. In fact, they are the exception if that is not the case for you. The fear of loneliness is deeply rooted in our society.
You can find more statistics at Statista
To cut a long story short: It is completely normal that you do not like to sit down alone in the canteen during your lunch break and that you are reluctant to show up alone at network meetings of all kinds. But this aversion is based on an ironic mistake: Alone does not mean loneliness. On the contrary, it can even become the key to more contacts.
Those who stand alone make more contacts at network meetings ...
Just think about it: When and how did you meet your best friends in life? Probably when you were alone in kindergarten on the first day, when you went to first grade alone or when you started studying alone in a foreign city. How so? Because you stand out when you have the courage to be alone. And because the other person is less afraid of rejection. After all, nobody would notice a possible rejection and apart from an injured ego at least no embarrassment is to be feared.
The best advice we can give you for your life - both professionally and privately - is therefore: Don't be afraid of standing alone or going to an event such as a network meeting unaccompanied.
You will see: your loneliness does not last long and you will have a conversation with people with whom you would never have exchanged a word if you had been with them. Probably you would not have even noticed these people - and vice versa neither would you have noticed them.
... and makes a lasting impression
Going to a network meeting alone is unusual. And being unusual takes courage and confidence. That arouses interest in other people. Of course, you shouldn't stare morose into your smartphone or present yourself in any other way aloof. But if you sit down alone at the table or stand at the bar with a look around, make eye contact and smile nicely, you will not be alone for long - guaranteed!
"Society needs the gate, and loneliness the wise."
Alone you not only make more contacts, you will also remember them for longer. Somewhere between admiration and amazement, your conversation partners will remember the lady or gentleman who was brave enough to open up all alone at the network meeting. They will remember your story, how you look and, at best, your name too. If you then maintain your new contacts, be it in person or via Xing, LinkedIn & Co, your network will soon be larger than that of all your sociable colleagues.
Reading tip: "Vitamin" B ": How to make friends at work"
So never forget your business cards and send a short email after getting to know each other:
“I was pleased to meet you yesterday and I found our conversation on the subject… extremely interesting. I would love to continue this next time in town. So that we don't lose sight of each other until then, I have sent you a contact request on XING. "
Feel free to pick up on an anecdote from the previous evening, a joke or a plan that you have forged. Do you work in a similar industry and wanted to exchange ideas over a business meal? Do you both enjoy playing tennis and would like to meet up for a match? Or you wanted to send the address for a hotel in Thailand, which you can recommend from experience? No matter what you talked about, pick up on the topic to keep in touch. This is how good network maintenance works!
Contacts are important for your professional success - and your happiness in life
What is all this for, you ask yourself now? Very easily: Contacts are important for your career. Those who know the right people receive better job offers or are promoted faster. With the courage and self-confidence that you show by being alone, you create an impressive image for your counterpart at the same time. "Vitamin B" and a good image - with this combination, success in the job is guaranteed not to be long in coming.
Reading tip: “Experts reveal: you don't get promoted if you perform. Rather…?"
In addition, being alone can counteract loneliness, as you have now hopefully understood. And that in turn is the key to your personal happiness in life. But don't get us wrong: being alone every now and then will help you make new contacts. You then have to look after them - both in your professional and private life. So being alone is only the first step towards more social contact. If, on the other hand, you are always a loner, you appear arrogant or socially incompetent in your environment - and do exactly the opposite.
Reading tip: "Lonely tip: The invisible suffering of managers"
So it can't hurt to sit alone at the table during your lunch break from time to time, to go to a network meeting unaccompanied or to travel the world on your own. You will get to know people you would never have met otherwise. Even if these are not "useful" for your career, you will ultimately be richer by a life experience, a memory, a valuable conversation and a contact. You just have to find the right amount of sociability and solitude.
What do you think this measure could look like? Are you more of a sociable person or do you need a lot of alone time? What positive and negative experiences did you have in your life when you were alone? We are curious to see which contacts you will make by being alone. Share your story with us in the comments!
Photo credit: iStock.com/djiledesign
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