Many people have fear when it comes to networking. They don’t know what to say to start the conversation or what to say after. So, they may shy away from talking to precisely the people they should be talking to.
A lot of people view small talk and networking as something they “have to” do. Which makes them a victim to it, instead of something they “get to” do.
If you can shift their focus off of yourself and onto all the wonderful people putting themselves out there, covering up their own vulnerabilities and being brave themselves, you’ll be able to just BE with people. Just a smile opens things up.
Here are some insider tips to use at film festivals and film networking events:
Do Your Research
If you can watch all the films that will be at the festival, that is a good thing to do because you can start having conversations about people’s work right away. Sometimes you cannot see the project that is being shown at the festival, but you can see their past work.
That is a very smart thing to do, because you will have gone above and beyond what most people do that are trying to meet these same people and…
It establishes you as a peer. Other filmmakers in the game for awhile will know their work… and it brings you up to speed and knowledgable about the people there as well.
Over achievers rule the world… and get opportunities that others do not!
Mindset of a Master Networker
Here’s the way I explain it, “When it comes down to it, I had a real interest in what they did. I was passionate about it too! So I SHOULD talk to them. It didn’t feel strange. They were people, just like me, just a few years ahead of me.”
I believed I should be there, and these people were MY kind of people.
I’d ask questions that allowed me to learn about them and start friendships.
I was willing to push my fear aside because I believed this was my calling. It’s what I was meant to do!
Did fear pop into my head from time to time? You bet! As soon as I stepped into the room… but I would tell myself that’s normal! That fear has been around since humans evolved.
In prehistoric times, when a new neanderthal walked into a clan, there was fear because they did’t know if they’ll be accepted or instantly killed. That fear is still in all of our nervous systems, because the neanderthals that survived where the cautious ones!
So, it’s just built into our nervous systems. Nothing to really freak out about.
If you listen to fear thought and believe it’s just too much for you, you won’t do much.
For me, the life I wanted was stronger than the physical sensation of fear. There was simply no time for it when I had big goals.
Ignore fear and know you are building yourself to be stronger.
Get into a Great State & Go Meet People!
Most people let fear stop them from talking to the exact people they should be talking to, who could make a difference for their career.
When you listen to your fear, it creates a disempowered state.
You may convince yourself that you don’t belong.
You’ll say, “I don’t have enough information to talk to those people.”
All you need to do is smile and you’re making progress.
Just remember, good energy is always needed!
I decided to be more excited about meeting the people than listening to my fears.
I knew I had to focus on what I was EXCITED about, because that would put me in a happy, delightful STATE…
And that would allow me to come up with light and happy questions to ask, be happy for other people, and enjoy meeting people I really admired.
Ever hear, “What you focus on, you move towards”?
I focused on who I was excited about meeting. I had done some in-depth research about their work, so I knew I could make them feel really great. I believe that the secret to success in going to a film festival is to GIVE and CELEBRATE people’s hard work and vision. Go to give, not to get.”
My “A-List” Work-Study Program teaches people to build careers based on giving.
Professionals want to feel good too. They work hard on their films and often, no one notices all the little details and thought that has gone into making a production super smooth and on point.
Make sure people feel good. Notice the little details that others miss because they are focused on getting.
Professionals will seek you out when you have that type of energy about you.
That’s the philosophy Friends in Film teaches. We don’t chase work and people, we understand the business and serve the work.
If you’re interested in breaking into the film industry and want to see if Janet’s program is right for you…
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