How to Attack the Room: 5 Networking Tips from Celebrity Assistant Darius Bradley
You hear so often that your worth is determined by your network. Is this completely true? That’s a question that has always been up for debate, but Heed recently spoke with someone who may have some insight.
Having left behind a $5,000 2nd-year tennis scholarship, Road Manager and Celebrity Assistant, Darius Bradley, who has worked with “Power” star Rotimi, Broadway Actress and Tony Nominee Saycon Sengbloh, and Gbenga Akinnagbe, got his start in the music industry 7 years ago, back at Hot 97 interning in the radio promotions department. He eventually landed internships with Warner Bros Records, Atlantic Records and Universal Attractions Booking Agency, using all those experiences he began to build his network from the ground up.
(Darius Bradley with “Power” Star Rotimi)
Here Are His 5 Effective Networking Tips
- Keep your conversations to a maximum of 5-10 minutes. You’re thinking, “I have 2 hours here why so short?” Here is the answer. If you’re having a conversation over 10 minutes you’re not leaving much to discuss once you decide to set the 1-on-1 meeting. You have a whole room to finesse! Remember, it’s the follow-up that matters, so quickly obtain the contact and follow up in the morning to continue the dialogue you began the evening prior. The ball is in your court to make them remember you as soon as possible.
- Go in with a target number of people you would like to speak with. You see a room full of wonderful working professionals but there’s only one of you. It’s impossible and ineffective to try and network with the entire room. Set a goal and do your research on the event! This will prepare you for who will likely attend the event.
- Body language is IMPORTANT. People read and respond to your energy, whether it is positive or negative. Remember to exude positive, high energy, because people gravitate towards that. I can’t express how many times I’ve gained multiple contacts because of my positive energy. Smile, it goes a very long way when you’re networking. Be vigilant as well, because someone is looking at you when you least expect it. If you’re in a corner not looking enthusiastic about being at the event, people will see that and not bother to network with you.
- Have your general pitch ready to go. “What am I working on?” “What do I need to move forward?” and “How can this benefit them?” are questions to ask yourself when crafting your general pitch. However, don’t become a robot; keep each conversation personable. Ask the person you’re speaking with what their interests are and about any projects they’re working on and be willing to see where you can possibly help. This will benefit not just them but you as well. Having been a celebrity assistant I learned that helping others achieve commercial and financial success makes you that much more valuable in the entertainment industry.
- Keep breath mints handy, not gum! Gum chewing becomes a distraction. With a mint you’re able to hold a conversation and their focus is on what you’re saying not if they can grab some gum from you afterwards!
Fun Fact: According to a study conducted by the University of Massachusetts, 60% of adults can’t have a ten-minute conversation without lying at least once.
To stay in touch with Darius feel free to contact him at Darius@DBradleyOfficial.com and visit his website www.DBradleyOfficial.com!