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International speaker and author on business networking strategy (UK)

Summary

  • Business Networking Strategist
  • International Speaker and author of 3 books on networking
  • Blogger for The Huffington Post
  • ‘One of Europe’s Leading Business Networking Strategists’ – The Financial Times
  • Fellow of the Professional Speaking Association UK

Keynote presentation include

  • It’s Who Knows You
  • Leveraging the Power of Your Network
  • Make the Room Work for You
  • How to Use LinkedIn as a Referral Tool

Who am I and what are my areas of expertise ?

A business networking strategist, I work with companies on how to use networking tools and build strong relationships 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. I work with my clients to help recognise that role and put the strategy and skills in place to leverage it.

I blog regularly for The Huffington Post and have been quoted in the international press, including The Sunday Times, The Financial Times and The Guardian in the UK. I have also co-authored two books on networking, and my third book, ‘Recommended: How to Sell Through Networking and Referrals’ was published by Financial Times Prentice Hall in July 2011.

Why are my presentations of interest or relevance to your audience?

Unfortunately, networking is 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.

Potential new business is either being left untapped or the cost of sales are too high if referral strategies aren’t in place. And many traditional approaches to generating referrals are lazy, poorly timed and ineffective. Meanwhile many companies face huge inefficiencies when their teams compete with each other and withhold information rather than collaborate and share.

Attitudes are changing slowly, particularly with the growth of online communities such as LinkedIn. And organisations who embrace networking fully often find an added advantage over their competition

What makes me different to other speakers?

“Andy has successfully elevated networking into more of a strategic arena ……………….rather than it just being a “skills” thing. ”

Phil Jesson, Director of Speaker Development Academy for Chief Executives

I spent eight years running a successful business network across the UK, giving me a unique insight into different approaches to networking and what worked well. Over the last six years, since leaving that business, I have worked with organisations across a range of industries across the world, giving me an invaluable insight into how relationships are built in different cultures and how the most successful people develop their networks.

How would I describe my delivery style as a presenter?

My delivery style has been described as both ‘conversational’ and ‘engaging’ and I take every step possible to involve the audience in my work. Although I’m happy to deliver a traditional keynote speech, where possible my sessions are interactive, allowing for experiential learning and audience involvement.

I also try to incorporate humour naturally into my presentations and in 2013 I challenged myself to sharpen this side of my work further by doing two stand up comedy sets in front of audiences of over 100 people on both occasions.

Why use me, and when should you do so?

If your organisation needs to improve, or even introduce, its approach to networking then I’m your man! I’m often asked to speak at sales conferences to either share referral strategies or improve collaboration between different divisions or country offices.

I’m often booked to speak in the slot before a break or lunch. I give the audience permission to network and challenge them to approach each other in those breaks, creating a different atmosphere at the event. If the session is interactive we often ensure that people are mixed up so that everyone engages with new people.

I also offer additional work beyond a keynote talk when at a conference, for no extra fee. Historically these have included 1-2-1 mentoring sessions, book signings, advice clinics and breakout seminars.

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Andy Preston’s Videos

Why networking isn’t selling

Is networking a positive thing?

Its who knows you

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