How to network a crowded room

NETWORKING is a vital tool in your business armoury – so how do you network a crowded room?

Here’s how. Walk up to a group of three people talking, and move in between two of them, staying just behind an invisible line that would be drawn between them. They will both move slightly back to invite you into the circle. The speaker may stop – in which case say: ‘I’m sorry to interrupt you, my name is [your name in full].’ Shake hands with all of them and then say to the person who was speaking: ‘Sorry, please carry on.’

Listen and then ask a question when you can. And to move on to the next group, say, ‘It’s been great talking with you, thank you,’ and walk away.

Or, ‘Will you please excuse me please?’

Or, Do excuse me, please.’

You’ve heard of winning friends and influencing people. Try it!

(Based on an extract from The Naked Leader Experience)



  • jackie witney

    Will do this tomorrow at the London business forum and feedback

  • Daniel Terat

    Yes, great plan to get involved and mingle.
    It’s a wonderful way to interact with people you don’t know, have tried it. It works.

  • Frances Granger

    Meeting and greeting hasn’t changed in years.
    Same philosophy, same results.

  • rosalind

    easy to say hard to do. I always feel like I’m interrupting but I do it anyway. I prefer single ones except these days the ones on their own are usually staring intently at their phones – I just say hello and introduce myself usually they seem grateful and put the phone away. they can always say – I’ve just got to finish this text – although if people are really busy on their phone they will go and hide in the corridor. once you have broken the ice with one another nearby will make eye contact as you approach them because they are already aware of your intention. Dont stay too long with anyone and if you’re in conversation always invite the people around to join in.

  • Mark Moorton

    This is great advice on what should be easy to do but, as human beings, seems incredibly difficult. I’ve shared this with my team as networking is a big part of our HR transformation programme.

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