I’m sure we all have somethings about networking that annoy us.
For me..the big one is being asked to go for coffee. I guess I used to accept the request more when I was out killing myself in the first year of my business. Then I learned that 9 times out of 10, it would end in a sales pitch from the person who requested the meeting. I learned to avoid these at all cost. If someone wants to get to know me, that’s fine. I figure out if there is a benefit to meeting them. (like maybe they can be a referring partner). I check out their profiles/website and make that determination and then agree or not. Lately I’ve been asking what the agenda is, that gets the pitch out and I can avoid the denial. I have very few things I can afford to buy or actually need, so I end up telling folks I will keep them in mind for future connections. I have referred people to them later too!
I also close by saying “Hey, that’s great we know what each other does now!”
Sometimes at events you don’t get enough talk time, but to do an hour over coffee, in today’s tight economy…no can do.