I recently had a conversation with several business owners on the purpose of a networking event. We all know that networking events have several purposes. But we came to the conclusion that many people attend networking events with the intent to snatch and grab free information from the other attendees.

Now, don't get me wrong. We all love to share our expertise. But most people are at networking events with the high hopes they will meet prospective clients, people who can refer clients, or meet joint venture partners. We even go hoping to make new friends. We don't go to networking events to be accosted or raped of our intellectual property. If you are a snatch and grabber you are being rude; so stop it.

Let me describe the snatch and grabber. The snatch and grabber has no intention of ever hiring you. He or she is there to snatch and grab free information. They will approach you each time they see you at events and ask one or two very specific questions which you will answer. They will never invite you to lunch or coffee. Most likely they will not even return your emails. I have even had one snatch and grabber pretend at each event she had never met me before. Yet, at each event she had snatched and grabbed; that is why I remembered her so very well. Your typical networking attendee would not think of asking such specific questions unless they had requested an appointment to meet with you and expected to pay you for your intellectual property or service.

So how do you handle the snatch and grabber? This takes you having a back bone and not giving away your knowledge for free. If clients typically pay you for the information the snatch and grabber is asking do not feel bullied to give it away for free. It also takes you realizing that the person is a snatch and grabber and not just innocently asking a question as a way to establish rapport. After brainstorming with several business owners I realized I needed a script to follow when approached by a snatch and grabber. I have learned to say "That is a great question. Please call my office so we can make an appointment to discuss it further." This is also a time for me to request their business card and offer mine. After getting their card you will want to change the topic by complimenting them on their clothing or turning to another person nearby and bringing them in to a new conversation. The snatch and grabber will attempt to brow beat you into giving away your intellectual property for free. Be strong and do not give it away for free. I recently encountered a snatch and grabber on a social networking site too. So be careful snatch and grabbers have graduated from traditional networking events to social networking sites.

Business owners listen up. You must stand up to the snatch and grabber. A realtor is not going to give you a free house so why are you giving away your information for free? A car salesman is not going to give you a free car and you won't receive free stocks from the stock broker so stop the snatchers and grabbers in their tracks by having a script ready so you do not give away your brain for free.

Remember, networking events are NOT for snatching and grabbing. They are great ways to meet prospective clients, gather referrals and leads, make referrals and provide leads, meet joint venture partners and make great friends.

Author's Bio: 

Coach Jaynine is the owner of Dream Catcher Business and Career Coaching. Jaynine uses the knowledge and skills she acquired during her 20 year career in the United States Marine Corps, working as a Psychologist in a locked mental health hospital, and being an entrepreneur to help medical and mental health professionals, small business owners, and medical spa owners grow their businesses by teaching them her five step process for attracting their ideal clients and turning them into paying clients. You can learn more about her signature program and download her free ecourse My Five Steps to Networking Success by visiting http://coachjaynine.com/