If you haven’t met him, you’ve heard of him. Wear your lapel badge on the right hand side and there’s a good chance you’ve been “Kintished.” And to be “Kintished” means you’ve been given business networking training by Will, or his team.
I caught up with Will on his way from a gig in Chester to another in Manchester the same evening.
Will was a marketing man trapped inside a job as a chartered accountant until the happy day in 2000 when he left accountancy and set-up his own company, Kintish. And now he says that everyday he has without figures is like his birthday.
Over the last 5 years over 50,000 people have rocked to networking skills taught by Kintish and when you leave his gig you know you’ve been Kintished.
In a typical day Will takes around 3 courses. One might be a law college where he explains how graduates can get their first job, or down in Birmingham explaining networking to people from the National Farmers Union.
In the evening he might attend a function put on by the company that invited him to speak. Every now and then at networking events or evening functions he comes across the “Golden No Nos” of how not to network. As an example he noticed that at one big law function he attended 2 senior partners shook his hand, but were looking over his shoulder for someone else to talk to the whole time.
The way Will explains networking it all sounds so easy.
How To Go Networking
If it’s your first time at a networking event, or you feel nervous, arrive early so that you can start talking to the initial arrivals, rather then walking straight into a room full of strangers
You can easily recognise the networking virgins as they hover near the refreshments. Will suggests you put them at their ease by chatting to them. When it’s time to move it’s as easy as suggesting that you want a cup of tea and ask whether they want one and then move on.
Maybe your networking virgin is so terrified that they stick to you like a star struck groupie. In which case Kintish to the rescue again: “Go join a group together and after a decent interval leave them with the group and move on.”
In a later post I’ll describe Will’s thoughts on how people form different network formations in the way they stand. And about their body language and whether you should try and get into the group to try out your networking skills.