Connections really do count. If you are serious about your business, can you afford not to network effectively?
Andy's belief is that networking is a vital tool in business, from sales generation to career development. Unfortunately, it's still not treated with the same strategic consideration as other business methods, leaving many companies and individuals failing to realise the potential their networks offer.
By knowing why you are networking and what you want to achieve, it is possible to plan accordingly and get great, measurable results.
A business networking strategist, he works with companies on how to use networking tools to develop their businesses. Networking is not just about sales. Whether for lead generation, breaking down silos internally, recruitment and retention of top staff or developing future leaders, networks and collaboration have a key role to play. Andy works together with clients to help recognise that role and put the strategy and skills in place to leverage it.
Andy blogs for The Huffington Post and has been quoted in national press, including The Sunday Times, The Financial Times and The Guardian. He has also written three books on networking, with a fourth book in the pipeline.
For eight years, Andy was Managing Director of one of the UK's leading referral-focused networking groups with over 2,000 member companies.
Since then, he has worked globally with companies from one-man bands to global names such as HSBC, Wella and GlaxoSmithKline to help them realise the full potential from their networking.
Andy is a Fellow and a former Vice-President of the Professional Speaking Association (PSA) and a Fellow of the Learning and Performance Institute (LPI). He is also a Master of the Institute of Sales Management and Member of the Global Speakers Federation (GSF).
How NOT to Get Referrals
Challenging sales teams and sharing the mistakes that lead to most businesses not getting as many referrals as they could
With growing competition and more demands on budgets, it's becoming harder and harder to win new business. Yet still so many sales people leave potential new revenues untapped and unexplored.
The reason is very simple. Across a range of industries, referral strategies range from tired and predictable to passive to simply non-existent. A large number of sales people and business owners become complacent when it comes to referrals and simply expect them to appear. Networking is still treated as a skill, not a core business strategy. Where referrals strategies do exist they tend to be lazy, poorly timed and ineffective.
As a result, potential new business simply goes elsewhere.
In this talk, Andy will share with you the key mistakes he sees practiced by so many unsuccessful companies time and time again. The mistakes that ensure that they don't get anywhere near as many referrals as they should.
This talk is ideal for audiences who have members who feel that they know how to generate new business through referrals but who may be making many of the mistakes outlined in the presentation.
It's Who Knows You
Why networking is so important and why it's essential to have a strategy.
For many people, networking is simply about passing out business cards at events or collecting contacts online. More successful business people, however, realise that it's a far more strategic tool with a big impact on many areas of their business or career.
How much could you accomplish with the help of your network...
- for your business?
- in your current role?
- in your career?
How much are you achieving at the moment?
This session is designed to enable participants to understand the power of their network, surround themselves with people who will support them at each turn and influence how other people see them. It can be run as a 45 minute talk or 90 minute interactive session.
What participants will learn:
Why networking is important both for business or career development
How to manage their personal brand and what people say about their business
The importance of mentor and peer group support
How a strong network can help you achieve more effective results and a lower cost of sale
The power of Six Degrees of Separation and how to connect with anyone through your network
What participants will discuss with their peers:
What do they want to be known for and who by?
What challenges do they face in their business or in their career?
How they can use their network to make key connections
Make the Room Work for You
Does the word 'networking' simply leave you cold? Do you avoid all networking opportunities if you possibly can?
When you go along to a networking event, do you find yourself standing on your own, talking to your work colleagues and watching the time wondering when you can leave?
A session that focuses on some of the key skills which make networking so much more effective...and enjoyable.
What You Will Learn
What is Networking?
Overcoming fear of a room full of strangers
Who to approach
What do you talk about?
Exchanging business cards
Leaving the elevator pitch on the ground floor
How to build and develop relationships
In addition, in the interactive talk delegates at your event will have the opportunity to introduce themselves to each other in a safe environment and start interesting conversations which will help them identify what they have in common and build rapport.
Can be delivered as a 30-45 minute talk or 90 minute interactive session.
Why is networking relevant to top leaders? How can you make a difference by connecting with connecting with key employees, stakeholders, influencers and others?
Andy interviewed a number of top leaders on why networking is so important to them and in this presentation he shares their thoughts, combined with his experience of the power of networks.
What You Will Learn
The role networking plays in successful businesses
How to identify your brand as a leader
Why your values need to be congruent with the values of your organisation
How your network can communicate your brand and your values
The importance of mentoring
The role of strategic alliances
How your network can keep you in tune with what is happening in your company, in your industry and beyond
The importance of long term relationships
In addition, in the interactive talk delegates at your event will have the opportunity to introduce themselves to each other in a safe and constructive environment and start interesting conversations which will help them identify what they have in common and build rapport.
Can be delivered as a 30-45 minute talk or 90 minute interactive session.
Bigger Than You - The Hidden Power of Your Network
What the participant will gain from this session:
You can't do it all on your own.
Whatever you think about your abilities, and whatever you'd like other people to think, you will achieve so much more in your career, in your role and for your business if you're open to the support of others. Yet, unfortunately, whether because of time pressures, the need to save face or sheer lack of focus, very few of us achieve anywhere near the level of success that our network could help us reach.
This session is designed to help you change that. Over the course of this presentation, we look at:
Why we don't like to let anyone help us
The importance of a trusted network and where to find it
When and where to share
The role of mentors and sponsors
How networks can give us key business intelligence
Innovating and creating new ideas with the help of our network
The support offered through online networks
What the organisation will gain from this session:
Participants in this session will go away with a much clearer focus on how to harness the power of their network to find answers, to challenge them and to drive their career or business to the next level.
As we move from a society where experts hoard knowledge and towards a more 'networked' or 'social' age of collaboration and information sharing, the culture of many organisations needs to shift and this is being recognised across a number of industries. Lack of an immediate answer is no longer routinely dismissed as a 'weakness' but nor is not knowing enough. It's important to develop a trusted network to help to find the answer.
This presentation provides the foundation block to putting that new, inclusive and supportive culture into place. Letting employees know that it's OK to ask for support and encouraging them to be honest about their shortcomings, while empowering them to do something about it.
More openness and honesty within an organisation can lead to:
Better performance from individuals and across the organisation
Greater employee engagement
Support for leaders who may feel isolated in their roles
Can be delivered as a keynote speech or longer interactive presentation, it can work on an organisational/leadership level or as a wider piece across the organisation or for specific teams.
Leveraging the Power of your Network
How much business are you winning through introductions from your network? Perhaps more importantly, how much business could you be winning through such referrals?
Most companies recognise the importance of referrals as part of an effective sales strategy yet so many fail to do anything proactive about finding them. Instead they leave referrals to chance, leaving substantial amounts of business untouched. Even companies who believe that they are 'referral aware' often fail to achieve anywhere near the real potential offered by their networks.
In this talk, Andy Lopata will focus on where to find referrals, particularly the ones right under your nose, how to make it easy for people to refer you and how to build an effective strategy to keep a flow of referrals into your business.
You'll leave with simple steps you can take to win high quality referrals with little effort.
What You Will Learn:
What does a quality referral look like?
Who is your ideal referral?
Identifying key introducers
Who is in your network and who do they know?
Why would people refer you?
Getting your message right
Building a referral book
Can be delivered as a 45 minute keynote talk or 90 minute interactive session
How to Use LinkedIn as a Referral Tool
Social media has exploded in popularity as a business tool in recent years and LinkedIn has been at the heart of that explosion. A large number of business people now have profiles on LinkedIn, but how many truly understand how to use it effectively?
Who this is for
Although particularly of use for those with a business development responsibility, from owner-managers to sales teams, everyone in a business should understand how they can use LinkedIn to find new connections to benefit the company.
Particularly recommended for sales teams, company directors and entrepreneurs.
What you will learn:
Where the power of LinkedIn really lies
How to put together an effective profile to attract key prospects
Who you should and shouldn’t connect to
How to raise your profile and connect with key influencers in your prospects’ industries
The difference a good testimonial can make, and what it should say
How to search for key connections through your existing network
How to ask for referrals through LinkedIn
By the end of the session, participants will understand the simple steps they need to take to set up an effective LinkedIn profile and how they can generate substantial new business with just a small time investment every week.
Can be delivered as a 45 minute keynote or 90-120 minute interactive session
The Networking Mindset
Invite people to a networking event and many will find any excuse not to go. Images fill our minds of people exchanging business cards and elevator pitches over cold canapes and warm wine. Many feel uncomfortable approaching strangers, struggle to know what to say or lack the confidence to talk to senior people.
Yet strong networks provide a foundation for a successful career and events are a key tool in helping us to build those networks and deepen the relationships within them.
How then, can we overcome our hesitation, enjoy networking events and ensure that they are productive?
In a brand new interactive presentation, Andy Lopata will explore the networking mindset, looking at what you need to think about to get the most out of your networking. You won’t just learn from Andy’s presentation, you’ll network throughout, putting Andy’s suggestions into action.
Building Your UK Network
A talk designed for trade delegations and overseas Chambers of Commerce. In this presentation, we explore how networking lies at the heart of developing a successful business in the UK.
In the presentation we discuss how to develop a UK network that will help you to become:
Better Known - How do you develop your profile in a new country and new market? Understand the role that social media and networking events play and how to develop relationships with key influencers who can open doors for you.
Better Equipped - Develop a network of people in the UK who can help you understand market trends, what people are buying and also comprehend the local culture and traditions - and how they affect your business.
Better Connected - It's often much more difficult to get through to key decision makers in the UK than it is overseas. Understand the importance of six degrees of separation and building a network who will make valued introductions and referrals.
This can be delivered as a 30-45 minute keynote presentation, a webinar or as a longer interactive session.
More Than Just a Cuppa...
Navigating the Online Networking Jungle
LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Pinterest, Google Plus...
The list is seemingly endless. Every day new social networking sites are formed and invitations to create another profile appear in our inboxes. In a world where digital communications mean ever growing demands on our time, how do we decide which social networks we should join, and how can we possibly justify the time needed to use them effectively?
In his talk Andy will share a simple approach to deciding which online networks are right for you and how to decide just what role they will play in your business or career.
Online networking offers so much more than sharing a picture of your latest cup of tea. With the right degree of focus they can be a fantastic business tool, offering valuable shortcuts, answers, brand building and introductions.
But without a clear idea of why you should engage with them you might as well just have a break and a cuppa.
What the clients say:
Andy, thanks again for making our Balance HK event a huge success. The audience gave you their undivided attention and you could hear a pin drop when you were speaking. I have never witnessed that before, with a room of 170+ people!
Maggie Suttie, Chair Balance Network, HSBC Hong Kong
It is great to work with a speaker like Andy who really wants to understand the audience he speaks to and tailors his content to them. It's also great to have all the post event content Andy prepared specifically for us and so quickly. It has been a pleasure to work with him.
Galina Lebedeva, Education & Events Senior Co-ordinator, Wella UK & Ireland
Andy has provided three fantastic talks for us as part of a "Networking" programme he tailored to our needs. He is really engaging and left the audience wanting more which is a rarity when you work in Finance! He is extremely professional and personable and it felt like Andy really knew the topics and had researched the audience. Just thinking about what the next set of talks he can provide will be...!
Nicola Hradek, Co-Chair HSBC Balance Employee Network
I worked with Andy for Unity, the Women Initiative at PayPal. Andy delivered a networking training in London and Paris. He joined us for a 1.5 hour workshop to speak about the importance of investing and utilising your network internally and externally. The feedback from attendees was overwhelmingly positive and we will continue to run the training in other offices in EMEA.
Astrid Huijssoon, Senior Marketing Manager Cross Border Trade - PayPal CEMEA
I've known Andy for many years and can personally endorse him as a business professional and speaker. I've worked alongside him as a speaker aswell as used him at some major customer events for Brother UK. Prior to our own event, Andy was very meticulous in ensuring our messaging was fully understood so that his content was spot on and the audience feedback supported this. Andy is highly familiar talking to B2B audiences particular, this comes across in his ability to translate key messaging well. Wherever I go, Andy is held in very high regard and I can personally endorse him as someone who is easy to do business with, professional and also great to work with.
Phil Jones MBE, Managing Director, Brother UK
Andy's 'The Networking Mindset' networking event was fascinating. I've been to loads of networking events over the years which are always full of people who don't quite know why they're there.... myself included. Really enjoyed it, and would highly recommend.
Nicholas Harkin, Head of Risk & Governance at Close Brothers Retail Finance
Andy is a great professional! He is engaging, focuses on games and case studies and is excellent in interacting with the audience. The best part is that he truly believes in networking and is actually really good at it! We've got excellent feedback from the audience and I would definitely recommend him for your next event.
Ovanes Ovanessian, CEO Web & Events, Bulgaria
Andy certainly made a difference on how I normally approach / perceive events such as this.
Ann Azzopardi, Category Buying Manager, Pret a Manger
I had great the great privilege of learning from Andy on one of his business coaching sessions at Natwest. I can honestly say that what i learned from Andy not only helped me achieve outstanding results in my working environment but also with personal interactions. What I learned and implemented has significantly changed my prospects for the future and given me the confidence to undertake tasks that i would previously have been intimidated by.
Fawzan Chaudhri, Senior Business Manager, Royal Bank of Scotland
Now take a look at Andy's superb showreel below and see him bring the audience to their feet!