The Magic of Relationships

This was a talk I gave on 25 October when I was invited by MAD Incubator to join their DARE BizStart 2012 roadshow for entrepreneurs and start-ups. The roadshow went to 4 cities in Malaysia – it began in Johor Bahru, went to Kuala Lumpur and came to Penang before going to Kota Kinabalu.

When I was asked to give a 30-minute talk, I was thinking what could I add to the day’s events as it consisted of 4 concurrent streams.

The other speakers comprised marketing and business people. The event was free to encourage entrepreneurship mindsets but the only peeve I had was that the location (Ixora Hotel in Prai) wasn’t exactly ideal.

If the organizers had held it in Wawasan Open University or even Eastin Hotel or even any of the beach hotels over here on the island, the turnout would be even more. (That is why out-of-state event organizers should always work with someone local and in-state, someone who knows what works best especially when it comes to venues for roadshows and events.)

I knew most if not all of the talks would be about skills and how-to’s on entrepreneurship.

Why I Spoke On This Topic

As the organizer had invited me as a representative of WomenBizSENSE (of which I am co-founder and vice-chairperson), I decided to focus on relationships and how to build rapport with people you meet in networking events.

You see, my group, WomenBizSENSE meets each month at YMCA Penang. Our events do attract guests (who are not members).

But each time I see the kind of “networking” going on, I mentally cringe.

People are just handing out business cards to each other. And they don’t care about the other person at all. It’s all about “me, me, me”. People attend these events to try to sell their stuff to others.

And do people build lasting impressions? Not really if all you’re bent on doing is shoving your flyer or business cards at others.

And then some will wail, networking is a waste of time. I don’t get any benefits at all.

It’s Not About You Silly

The first thing is, if you can’t get the other person to trust you, you can’t sell anything.

That’s how I conceived the talk and presentation slides.

My message was simple: whenever you go into any networking event, stop being selfish. Try out these 8 tips and see the magic that unfolds.

I use these tips in my business and personal life and they’ve brought me such incredible abundance, opportunities and blessings!

I am pleased to say that my talk resonated with the 40 attendees who really enjoyed the 8 rapport booster tips and the story about Sue Williams. One of the speakers came and shook my hands, grinning from ear to ear, saying that he truly enjoyed my heartfelt talk. Another told me he hopes to put my tips into action.

My other “gift” was that attendees received handouts after the talk. This handout isn’t the slides printed out. It is a 7-page document which allowed attendees to get the complete picture even if they did not attend my talk.

You can read the handout below.

(Note: My slides aren’t like the regular Microsoft Powerpoint slides done the “factory” style with stick figures and ugly fonts and uglier colours. I absolutely hate those boring things.)

Let me know how you like my slides! Want to know how I created the slides and handouts? Did I rehearse?How much time did I spend on crafting my slides? Or what you should do if an organization invites you to speak and you have no topic at all? Let me know if you want me to do a follow-up blog post on these topics. Leave me your comments below!

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