In this session of the Happy Go Legal podcast, Chelsea interviews Catherine MacDonagh to help you boost your networking skills by being prepared and following up in ways that will impress your new connections. She combines a naturally engaging personality with years of experience in marketing and consulting in the legal field to help you consider how to create a more effective networking strategy for yourself and your firm.
More specifically, this session covers:
- What lawyers find most challenging about networking
- How to find an approach to networking that works for you
- Why you will get better at networking with practice
- How to prepare in advance for a networking event
- Tips to keep in mind to get better results at a networking event
- How to follow up after a networking event
Welcome to the Legal Mocktail, an effective and powerful training program that allows participants who work in the legal profession to develop their networking skills, learn new strategies and tactics, and build business relationships, all while attending an event in a reception-like setting.
The Legal Mocktail is an experiential learning program that teaches networking skills to lawyers and those who work with them - and it works for everyone else too (please visit us at The Mocktail). We have delivered this unique training exercise to all kinds of groups. The reason that this experiential training is so effective is that it replicates the real life situation of attending a cocktail reception or other social or business event and allows for real-time feedback by skilled facilitators.
This training program that takes place in two parts. First, participants engage in a networking exercise that simulates the types of events that business professionals attend - in an environment that includes the challenges of handling real food and drinks, entering and exiting conversations, shaking hands and exchanging business cards. In this part, attendees practice skills and experience networking with a specific goal. Next, a debrief session is delivered by the Legal Mocktail facilitator, who provides insights and relevant networking tips based on observations made during the exercise.
The Legal Mocktail provides non-threatening opportunities for the participants to learn, practice and hone a variety of skills that enable them to “work a room.” The focus of the Mocktail is on forging and furthering relationships rather than “selling” or “pitching.”
Mocktail program lessons are geared toward preparation, identifying needs, making connections and managing relationships before, during and after business events and social settings. Specific skill development includes
- Preparing for the event and identifying people you want to meet.
- Introductions and elevator speeches.
- Effective questions to ask.
- The importance of listening.
- Building in follow ups to conversations you want to continue.
- Graceful entrance and exit strategies.
- Ways to keep in touch with new contacts after the event.
At the conclusion of the Legal Mocktail, participants will have experienced how to approach any “meet and greet” as an opportunity to forge and further relationships through networking before, during and after the event. Through the training program and facilitated “debrief" session, participants learn to invest in preparation, set reasonable goals, listen, ask questions (and then listen some more), and follow up.