Last night was my first evening class for British Sign Language Level 1.
It's something I've wanted to do since I was 18 and ended up living with nuns in Fiji and working in a school for deaf children (long story). Now, X amount of years later I'm finally getting around to it.
I loved my first class and luckily I can still remember the alphabet and some of the other basics. But something I had forgotten is the amount of expression involved in communicating in sign - I've really missed it!
Words almost take a back seat, body language and facial expressions are how you communicate and how you tell a story.
This got me thinking about the amount of unspoken communication we're missing out on, through our ever growing dependence on digital communication.
Talking to colleagues via Slack when you're in the same room. Texting your husband 'cause he's upstairs and you can't be bother to shout. And even more importantly (for this discussion at least) - building your profession network online but never meeting in person.
The purpose of a professional network is to grow relationships built on trust. But can you really 'know, like and trust' someone when you've never met them in person?
Are you missing out on all the things they're saying through their body language, and facial expressions, and therefor you're only hearing part of their story?
And are you giving people the chance to really get to 'know, like and trust' you by going networking and meeting others in 3D?
If you're unsure about networking get in touch - I'll be announcing new networking training full day workshops very soon. As well as practical tips and tools, they will also include the creation of a bespoke networking strategy designed for your specific target market.