14 Killer Tips on How to Network Effectively if You Hate to Network

04/14/2016 10:25 am ET Updated Apr 14, 2017

Do you just dread walking into a packed room full of people smiling and chatting happily amongst themselves and you know that you have to put your best foot forward and introduce yourself at this essential event?

Do you go into a hot sweat and just wish that you hadn't signed up for this event. Would you prefer to be in the safety of your home office and not have to subject yourself to this kind of torture?

Are you guilty of going networking and clinging on to the one person you know and not 'work the room?'

You are not alone. Do not worry. Networking puts most people out of their comfort zone but it is a necessary evil! It is something that you need to embrace and fall in love with!

By networking you will reap the benefits of:

· Coming away from your computer networking and doing it face to face
· Meeting new contacts
· Learning about new businesses and trends
· Making new friends!
· The list can go on and on.

Here are 14 killer networking tips from thought leaders and influencers from all over the world. They share their one essential golden networking nugget:

1. Donna Fisher
"The heartbeat of networking is people caring about people. Networking is truly powerful when genuine human caring exists."

2. Stefan Thomas
"Every BIG opportunity starts with a little conversation."

3. James Knight
"It doesn't take a genius to see there were living in exciting, challenging turbulent times. With all the emphasis on technology, it is important not to lose sight of the most important skill of all, our ability to Connect with others. Your effectiveness, success and future depends on it."

4. Rob Brown
"Your NETWORK is who you know. Your REPUTATION is who knows you. The best way to build the second is to build the first!"

5. Patricia Fripp
"Outside of the privacy of your own home all speaking is public speaking."

6. James Swanwick
"Always ask yourself: How can I help others, rather than how can they help me?"

7. Bronwyn Boyle
"Networking is primarily about what you have to give, not get .... And not being attached to the outcome."

8. Helen Vandenberghe
"Building Joint Ventures: When creating joint ventures think about the Long Term. Rather than inviting someone to partner just on one specific project-discover what their goals are for the next year or two, and build a proposal that gives you both multiple opportunities to support each other and helps them achieve their goals."

9. Bob Littell
"The key to success in any business or within any company is based upon one's ability to build and maintain 'trusted relationships'. It's even more important in today's more 'risk-averse' world. A concept called NetWeaving - known globally as the 'business version of Pay It Forward' - allows people to grow their own businesses by helping others build theirs."

10. Cynthia Zhai
"Voice is not important. Voice is powerful. As a business owner, you cannot overlook this powerful tool that can help you convey confidence, credibility and authority. Learning to develop this powerful tool to your advantage will catapult your business success."

11. Susan RoAne
"90% or more of people in any room are shy and would welcome your conversation. So seize the opportunity, make sure you're smiling and just say something and that will break the ice."

12. Jason Jacobsohn
"Building the right professional relationships is critical for continued business success."

13. William Buist
"Having profound clarity to describe an ideal referral means you help the people you speak to find the very best referrals for you."

14. Mike Clayton
"The secret to influencing, creating gravitas, and great networking is silence. When you get comfortable with silence, you can both control a conversation and let the other person value the time more highly."

Good luck and I hope you have a good next networking event!