Mastering networking to elevate business relationships

A PLC wanted to energise its sales teams and help them maximise their investment in networking.
Our client

Talent Lab was approached by a large company looking to re-position itself as a technology-led organisation fit for the digital age. They approached us because whilst they had the strategy, when they are asked their sales team about what they hated most about their roles, the Number #1 answer was networking. For a company looking to pass new brand messages on to clients and find new prospects, this was a problem.

The challenge

Put any person into a networking situation and the thought of talking to strangers can fill them with fear. Add levels of expectations in terms of generating sales and the very human process of people talking to people becomes a series of potential failures to be dreaded. We had to show and teach our client’s sales teams that networking didn’t have to be like this, but we had to do it as a video as part of their online AGM.

How we helped

Given 40 minutes to get our key messages across, including a live surgery to follow, our approach was to film an as-live video inside an empty venue. This involved taking employees through the process of networking, using signposts to highlight how to use conversations in every day life and then transpose these lessons into potential business encounters.

Networking essentially is meeting strangers. Our approach was to remove their fear of talking to strangers and then show how to use networking to develop potentially new relationships.

The video focused on showing how a sector like construction is changing. Much of our time is spent off-site and spent at conferences, exhibitions and trade events. The sector is becoming more diverse and traditional sales tools like cold calls and email can do more harm than good. The key to winning work is your relationships and how you manage – and start – them.

Key programme steps

  • Our video featured life-size mannequins – one male in a hard hat and hi-vis, the other a young woman in a suit – to set the scene.
  • Using the mannequins, we took the viewers through a set of networking scenarios that they would recognise as typical of a working week.
  • At key points, we broke down conversations into identifiable steps that they could learn from and personalise.
  • We emphasised how networking is not about closing sales, but a chance to gather information and start potentially valuable relationships.
Outcome

The post-video session was an interactive live Q&A on the themes of the video and we garnered the second-highest viewership across the online AGM, rivalled only by the CEO’s presentation.

The response from participants was amazing and many said they now couldn’t wait to go networking to put the ideas into practice.

Contact The Lab if you and your team need help developing your networking skills.

More Networking Projects

20 years enhancing companies' networking opportunities

At Talent Lab, we're not just shaping networking proficiency; we're cultivating a culture of strategic relationship-building that propels businesses toward sustained success.

Transforming events into connected communities and opportunity engines

Let our experience of hosting over 1,000 business networking events to help you unlock the value of your community

20 years enhancing companies' networking opportunities

At Talent Lab, we're not just shaping networking proficiency; we're cultivating a culture of strategic relationship-building that propels businesses toward sustained success.

Transforming events into connected communities and opportunity engines

Let our experience of hosting over 1,000 business networking events to help you unlock the value of your community
Scroll to Top