Networking is all about sharing information and resources from one person to another for the purpose of adding value.
It’s sharing! It’s building lasting relationships! It’s exchanging something of value!
If there’s no sharing of value, there’s no real networking taking place.
Don’t wait on the other person. You start sharing and don’t keep score! What goes around comes around, so pay it forward and keep on sharing.
Remember these 4 steps and start building those lasting, valuable relationships.
- Networking is not selling!
Don’t try to sell at a networking event! Invest in the relationship first. Sell later.
In the world of networking, don’t start selling until you have established a “sharing” relationship.
Be a giver. Serve others, and wait for the referrals, introductions, and other opportunities to come later.
- Follow up
When I attend an event I talk to lots of people. But I look for one or two that might be a good candidate for my services or a good referral source.
Again, NOT SELLING! I’m just trying to build a relationship of trust and generosity. I make it my goal to have a follow up contact with two or more people from the event, a quick email, message, etc. and to see if there might be interest in meeting for a coffee.
Very low-key and I’m looking for ways to serve them or add value in some way. I want to create a reason for them to want to meet with me.
So have a goal and follow up, follow up, follow up!
- Choose the right event
There are endless options and different events attract different types of business. You can end up in a room full of “Takers / Hunters”, these people occasional end up with an immediate sale, but little more.
A room of “Givers / Farmers” will develop relationships that will continue to grow and extend beyond your original network.
Find the ones that give you the best shot at meeting people who can help you grow your business.
If you dread taking the time to “network” or you attend an event with reluctance or a negative attitude, it will have a negative effect on your networking success.
Make sure you are mentally and emotionally prepared to “network” before you attend an event. Go with a goal in mind and determine beforehand that this will be a beneficial experience.
Be positive, optimistic, and look for opportunity. Most of all take an interest in the people you meet. Plan to find someone to serve in some way. Of all the things I’ve mentioned, your mind-set is the biggest game-changer! Don’t waste your time networking if your heads not in the game.
Don’t be lazy.
Go to win.
Go to work.
And go to give.
What’s the best networking tip you have?