Yesterday, we welcomed Erik Eklund, international speaker, storyteller and coach, who has founded the concept Connecting Humans, and he gave us a great networking workshop in collaboration with the TBE and Katie Wallace on how to surround yourself with people that helps us elevate our full potential.
The reason for this unique workshop was to empower the attendants to really connect with one another from a human level when going to a networking event. You might have noticed, when networking it’s often difficult, awkward and rare to make a real connection with someone, and this is because everyone is too concerned about showing off. In the end, people do not show their real self, they just pretend, and the connection is merely superficial. Well, thanks to interactive exercises we learned how to create a real connection with each other.
Today, we’ll give you a quick summary of what happened as well as our impressions, and you’ll get all the tips to feel comfortable and rock at your next networking event! For all the tips and tricks and to experience it yourself, follow Erik’s Facebook Page for his upcoming events.
It all begun with a wonderful setting with fresh fruit and water on our idyllic terrace. At the end of evening, Erik told us that the fruit and water were not chosen randomly, they were here to help us get more energy and be more focused.
During the workshop, we had two basic rules to follow; the first, to be the energy we wanted to attract; and the second one, to not say what our job title was nor our company. It might be a weird concept, but people followed the rule.
The first exercise consisted in randomly going through the audience and telling people a genuine compliment. “Wow, I really like your shirt”, “You have a great smile”, a simple compliment can change your overall perception and help you feel at ease. When you’re relaxed, it’s easier to start talking, and to create a trustful relationship; even if it’s going to last 10 minutes. But there is a catch! The compliment must be real, otherwise, the other person will feel that it’s fake and you are going to get the opposite feeling. I must say that it felt amazing to receive a nice comment from a total stranger, it’s a great dose of sugar for your self-esteem and it really helped to connect with people.
For the second exercise, Katie told us to ask people what brought them to Barcelona and to carefully listen to everybody’s story. It’s crazy how a simple question like that can help you connect with someone else. Every story is different and unique. In the end, people open up and tell you very personal stories. That’s how a real connection is created.
In the third exercise, Erik went even deeper starting with hugging each other and we got to ask each other what we would do differently today if we wouldn’t take tomorrow for granted. Imagine how close you get to someone by asking that question! The vibes became even more intense.
For the fourth and final exercise, we asked someone what we could do for them. I really didn’t know what to say, I didn’t think that I needed any help at anything at this point. And that’s when the magic happened; because you can do something for someone in a multitude of ways. For instance, you can help someone by giving the name of your favourite restaurant.
At the end of the event, we were all happy and satisfied with the workshop, we got real contacts and tips to attend networking events and really connect with other people.
As Erik says, “Who you meet can change your life” and you’d better prepare for it!
So, if you really want to meet new people and create a connection, remember to be the energy you want to attract, be authentic, think about the future and offer your help before asking for it, and you will quickly surround yourself with people that bring you to another level with them, and you’ll never know what amazing things can come from it!