I recently volunteered to speak at the Eastleigh Wine o’clock Club or was I asked? I don’t remember!!
Anyway as it happened I didn’t end up speaking. It was a curious evening to learn more about myself and how I communicate. For those that know me I am naturally a talker and I am a trained listener. More recently I decided to step up and talk about what I do to larger groups.
I was due to talk about halfway through the evening although the times had not been agreed.
With this in mind and bearing in mind I had decided not to prepare a script and instead simply speak from the heart, I decided to spend the first part of the evening meeting the audience. There were lots of new people. I then realised the impact of making the decision to stand up and talk from the heart to a room full of new people and how comfortable I had become networking with familiar faces.
The noise was building up in the wine bar which is open to everyone not just the club, there was no stage to elevate myself and no microphone.
I mingled and asked questions. That night I learned about gold blocks, wealth management, flowers, trips to London and printing and I shared a chuckle moment with someone who also use to work in a bank as we remembered some of our faux-par’s.
I also learned that for some their biggest challenge was time management and for one the burning question was does it really work to niche. I even asked what they wanted to get out of the evening and most said they don’t know they just thought they would pop along.
All of which I thought I could talk about that but then I had this overwhelming sense of fear. I didn’t want to tell people how to solve their problems I wanted to help them have the tools to solve the problems for themselves.
My opinion is only my opinion, my perception it is not fact and it is not guaranteed to work for them. Oh my what am I going to actually talk about I thought!!
Then something happened, I am not quite sure, but the food arrived and some people left and somehow I had missed the opportunity to speak. I stood and thought how did I set myself up to fail like that?
I realised then that I had not used step 3 of the 8 Step Strategy I to set myself up for success. When I got back I asked myself these questions and gained some insight into what I need to do differently next time.
Here are the questions I could have asked myself.
For this speaking to be just the way I would like it to be it would be like what?
For the speaking to be like that I need to be like what?
For me to be like that and speaking to be like that what do I need from others?
It got me thinking about the questions those people did want answering such as time managment, whether you should niche and the fact when I asked everyone what they wanted to gain from the evening ‘most’ said they didn’t really know they just thought they would pop along.
To ensure you are setting yourself up for success when networking try these questions and let me know what you learn.
For networking to be just the way you would like it to be it would be like what?
For networking to be like that you need to be like what?
For networking and you to be like that what do you need from others?
Please do join us at the Fareham Wine O’clock Session where for now I am booking skilled speakers to share their pearls of wisdom while I get some more training and help with my speaking.
Thanks for listening
Founder and Power Group Facilitator