Why do people leave business networking? (Education, presentation by Jeremy Dannheisser BNI 2023)

How to succeed in business networking


Business networking can be a powerful tool for achieving your business goals. However, it is important to have a clear purpose, be disciplined, and be helpful and giving in order to succeed. If you can do these things, you will be well on your way to building strong relationships and generating leads.

The Prima Donna Syndrome: Unveiling the Secrets to Building Stronger Professional Relationships


In today's competitive business landscape, establishing and maintaining strong professional relationships is paramount to success. However, there are certain challenges that can hinder our ability to foster these connections. One such obstacle is the Prima Donna Syndrome. In this article, we delve deep into this syndrome, its impact on professional relationships, and provide actionable insights to help you overcome it. Let's embark on a journey to develop stronger connections and achieve greater success together.

Understanding the Prima Donna Syndrome

The Prima Donna Syndrome refers to a set of behavioral patterns characterized by an inflated sense of self-importance, a constant need for validation, and an excessive desire for attention and recognition. Individuals affected by this syndrome often prioritize their own needs and desires above those of others, leading to strained professional relationships and hindered collaboration.

The Impact on Professional Relationships

When the Prima Donna Syndrome takes hold within a professional setting, it can have far-reaching consequences. Let's explore some of the key ways in which this syndrome impacts professional relationships:

1. Erosion of Trust and Collaboration

The inflated ego and self-centeredness associated with the Prima Donna Syndrome can erode trust among colleagues and hinder effective collaboration. When individuals prioritize personal recognition over team achievements, it undermines the spirit of cooperation and creates an environment of competition rather than collaboration.

2. Diminished Team Morale

The constant need for attention and validation exhibited by Prima Donnas often leaves their teammates feeling undervalued and unappreciated. This can result in diminished team morale and a lack of enthusiasm for shared goals. Ultimately, it can lead to decreased productivity and hinder the overall success of the team.

3. Impaired Communication and Feedback Loops

Prima Donnas tend to dominate conversations and dismiss the opinions and contributions of others. This behavior can stifle open communication and hinder the free flow of ideas within a team. Moreover, when feedback is perceived as a personal attack rather than a constructive opportunity for growth, it becomes increasingly challenging to foster a supportive and nurturing work environment.

Strategies for Overcoming the Prima Donna Syndrome

Now that we understand the detrimental effects of the Prima Donna Syndrome on professional relationships, let's explore some effective strategies to overcome this behavior and build stronger connections within our work environments:

1. Cultivate Self-Awareness

Self-awareness is the first step toward overcoming the Prima Donna Syndrome. Reflect on your behaviors and attitudes, and acknowledge the impact they may have on others. Actively seek feedback from trusted colleagues and be open to constructive criticism. Developing self-awareness allows you to identify and address any detrimental patterns in your professional interactions.

2. Foster a Culture of Collaboration

To combat the negative effects of the Prima Donna Syndrome, foster a culture of collaboration within your team or organization. Encourage open dialogue, active listening, and equal participation from all members. Emphasize the value of shared achievements over individual accomplishments, promoting a sense of unity and cooperation.

3. Practice Empathy and Active Engagement

Cultivating empathy and actively engaging with your colleagues is vital for overcoming the Prima Donna Syndrome. Take the time to understand the perspectives and needs of others, and show genuine interest in their ideas and contributions. By actively engaging with your teammates, you create an inclusive environment that values and appreciates diverse viewpoints.

4. Embrace Constructive Feedback

Instead of perceiving feedback as a personal attack, embrace it as an opportunity for growth and improvement. Encourage feedback from your colleagues and be receptive to their suggestions. By adopting a growth mindset and actively seeking ways to enhance your professional skills, you demonstrate humility and a commitment to personal development.


Overcoming the Prima Donna Syndrome is crucial for fostering strong professional relationships and achieving long-term success. By cultivating self-awareness, fostering a culture of collaboration, practicing empathy and active engagement, and embracing constructive feedback, we can dismantle the barriers that hinder effective teamwork and collaboration. Let us strive to build stronger connections, elevate our professional relationships, and unlock new opportunities for growth and achievement.

In conclusion, the Prima Donna Syndrome poses significant challenges to building strong professional relationships. By understanding its impact and implementing effective strategies, such as cultivating self-awareness, fostering a collaborative culture, practicing empathy and active engagement, and embracing constructive feedback, we can overcome this syndrome and pave the way for improved collaboration, trust, and success. Let us embark on this journey together, creating a work environment that nurtures and uplifts all team members, and transcending the limitations of the Prima Donna Syndrome.

Mastering the Art of Hosting a Thriving Business Mixer


Hosting a successful business mixer is more than just an event; it's a strategic opportunity to forge valuable connections and expand your professional network. While it may appear daunting, remember that your primary goal is to facilitate networking effectively. In this comprehensive guide, we present you with a wealth of insights and strategies to ensure your next business mixer is a resounding success.

1. Strategic Planning: The Foundation for Success

Begin Early

Initiate your planning at least eight weeks in advance. This ample timeframe enables you to curate a diverse guest list and encourages professionals from various backgrounds to attend. Furthermore, it provides you with an opportunity to encourage potential attendees to contribute door prizes, enhancing engagement and excitement.

2. Optimal Venue Selection: Setting the Stage for Connections

Utilize Your Workspace

Consider hosting the mixer at your office space or business location, provided it is spacious enough. This approach not only exposes your workspace but also creates a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere for networking. Ensure the chosen venue is easily accessible and provides ample parking for attendees' convenience.

3. Showcase Products and Services: Encouraging Interaction

Dedicated Display Areas

Allocate clearly marked areas for attendees to exhibit information about their products and services. This setup encourages interactive conversations and information exchange, fostering valuable connections among participants.

4. Designate a Welcoming Committee: Setting the Tone

Visitor Hosts

Appoint a group of enthusiastic "Visitor Hosts" responsible for warmly welcoming arriving guests. Ensure everyone has a name tag, and guide them on proper completion. To encourage active mingling, limit the availability of chairs within the room, prompting attendees to engage in meaningful conversations.

5. Engage in Networking Exercises: Breaking the Ice

Kickstart with Activities

Begin the mixer with a brief networking exercise, such as participants meeting three new individuals or discussing their most effective networking strategies with someone from a related field. These icebreakers create meaningful interactions and set the tone for the event.

6. Innovative Mixer Ideas: Adding a Dash of Excitement

Creative Concepts

Inject excitement into your event with innovative ideas. Consider organizing a "Meet Your (Business) Match" session, where professionals with similar backgrounds gather in designated zones (e.g., finance, real estate, healthcare). Alternatively, introduce a fun twist by having guests draw cards with the names of famous duos, encouraging them to find their "partner" during networking (e.g., Romeo – Juliet, Mickey Mouse – Minnie Mouse).

7. Stay Focused on Networking: The Core Objective

 Networking is Key

Maintain unwavering focus on facilitating networking throughout the event. While it may be tempting to steal the spotlight with speeches or presentations, remember that the paramount goal is to foster connections.

8. Efficient Closing: Ending on a High Note

Smooth Conclusion

As you conclude the mixer, allocate around ten minutes for introductions and door prize distribution. Acknowledge everyone briefly, expressing gratitude for their participation while reinforcing the networking aspect of the event. Punctuality is key – start and end the event as scheduled.

Conclusion: A Platform for Connections

The success of a business mixer hinges on your ability to create an environment where professionals can engage, share insights, and establish valuable connections. By adhering to these expert tips, you can host an event that not only benefits your own business but also provides a platform for others to expand their networks and collaborate effectively. Remember, the core focus should always be on networking, and by prioritizing this objective, you will excel at hosting a thriving business mixer.

If you've hosted networking mixers before and have additional insights to share, or if you've got an intriguing story about your experience with hosting a mixer, we invite you to share it in the comments section below. Your expertise can further enrich the networking community's knowledge and success.