Indeed, you should be having multiple conversations every day in order to create more opportunities and generate more business. Yet, don’t underestimate the advantage of keeping quiet. Here’s when to bite your tongue and what you can learn by doing so.
Zip it. You can’t learn when you’re talking. If you spend most of a meeting or a conversation talking, trying to impress or trying to sell, you’re not learning anything. You’re also going to miss out on potential partnerships and you likely won’t hear enough about the challenges the other person is facing to know how you can help solve their challenges.
Listen. It is not only important to let other’s talk at meetings or in conversations, it is more important to listen to them. Nobody is going to be motivated to talk if you are not listening. People can tell if you are asking them to talk just to check off a box or whether you and others are actually listening and digesting what they are saying. More importantly, no one will trust you and they definitely wont want to do business with you.
Don’t ignore. Learn to leverage the suggestions and ideas everyone has. Learn how to connect your contacts and tap into each other’s networks. The goal is to get the best comments from everybody and have the team work together to synthesize the suggestions into an idea superior to anything anyone (yourself included) initially had. Come out with a better idea.