Networking is one of the most effective ways to market your business. It gives you the opportunity to meet potential customers face-to-face and qualify them. I love attending network events. I meet new people and re-acquaint myself with connections in my network. I've also been watching myself recently to make sure that I'm not a “network hog”.
Network hog – noun: A person who monopolizes your time in an unnecessary conversation when they need to schedule an appointment with you to discuss the situation further.
We've all come across these types of people and may have been guilty of the crime ourselves. Network hogs make it impossible to get to know others at the networking event because they continuously want to talk to you. I observed this situation recently and felt awful for the other person. They were struggling to grow their business by approaching others but the network hog trailed them everywhere they went. If this is you, here are some ways to diffuse the situation.
By this time, you know the network hog's business and who they are looking for. Introduce him/her to others that will help them grow their business.
Join A Circle
Don't be alone with the network hog! Join a circle of people and chances are him/her will stop talking to you. They will find someone else to talk to about their business.
Have A Signal
I try to attend networking events with other business owners and professionals. We have developed a rescue signal amongst each other when a network hog approaches us.
Have you found other ways to herd the networking hog away? Let us hear about it in the comments section below!
Photo: Copyright (c) 123RF Stock Photos
Network hog! We’ve all been there and your advice about leading them to someone else is the best. Just another introduction and you can be outta there! LOL
Love it! Have probably done it in a past life. Introducing to others is a great solution. Also, it is a compliment. This person feels you have information that will help them – so it’s really acknowledgment of the expert status you’ve attained.
Thanks Tambre! I didn’t think of that angle: that the person would view this as a compliment. Thanks!
I don’t speak this language, but I understand some of the concepts- these folks are known as “schnorrers”. They just want something for nothing. Unfortunately, I must have a special magnet that attracts them to me at various events. I routinely ask them after five minutes if they would like to discuss this further at my office or over the phone, since I would like to have the opportunity to meet as many folks here as I can. I hand them my card, and tell them I look forward to meeting them again soon.
I rarely have.
And, for those of you who think this is terrible, for years, I tried to give them more time (up to 30 minutes) at these meetings. All I got for that effort was missed opportunities at the meeting.
You’re right Roy, sometimes they can just be people who want something for nothing. They’re out there too!
Thanks for commenting Roy!
Kristen I love your analogy here. I find network hogs offline and online too. I also remember those days yearning to get noticed, be seen and heard. So I probably was a network hog for a while.
Your ideas and suggestions are really good. I like that you have a ‘rescue signal’ amongst your networking group, that reminds me of the rescue signals when I was first dating!
Great post – really enjoy your blog.
Thanks Lynn! And yes, I remember those signals when I was double dating with friends. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!
Great advice, Kristen!
People who push, prod, and pounce are what I call “undesirables”. And, yes … they’re hoggish. And we may as well add ‘greedy’, ‘unprofessional’, and ‘inconsiderate’ to the mix.
For what it’s worth, individuals who behave in this manner are usually, at heart, the most insecure people on earth!
Network hog, love it! I love that your circle has hand signals too! Very creative! Definitely not my style…I appreciate those that are respectful of other’s time. Great post!
Thanks Jennifer! I try to be as well!