Networking: The Power of Building Relationships. We've all been told that in the working world it's not what you know, it's who you know that will open. Being seen and getting known. Listening and learning. Being persistent. ◗ Look for opportunities to be seen and to become known (public meetings. Looking for your next job or business deal? Get into networking! We share the most helpful networking tips for building sustainable.
That is, in actual fact, a networking move. The most commonly used and effective social media platforms used primarily for business networking are Twitter and LinkedIn. Networking is about meeting the right people, not all the people.
Effective networking is more about quality than quantity.
Two strategies may be at play here: In this approach, the person tries to connect with as many people as they can. In a room full of people, he is that person who flits from one end of the room to another, talking to pretty much everyone. His objective is to make as many contacts as he can, possibly everyone he comes in contact with. This method will work only if you are an expert at networking, and you have the ability to leave a memorable impression on everyone that you have met and talked to.
This approach is more selective. The networker will choose only several individuals, those they deem to be the best prospects, and approach them. They are more concerned with making a lasting impression on a handful of contacts, instead of rubbing elbows with a hundred.
23 Networking Tips for Building Effective Relationships
The advantage of this method is that the networking will be more concentrated or focused. It has higher probabilities of helping create quality relationships. Take the first step by reaching out. You should not wait for your potential contact to approach you. Make the first move instead. You can start by being friendly and helpful, offering them any assistance they may need. Or you can simply start by expressing your curiosity about them. It applies to this situation, too.
Manage your time to make way for networking. Businesspeople often chime out that they are too busy running their businesses to go out and mingle. They see this as a waste of time; why should they hang around talking to other people, some of them even competitors or rivals, when he could simply stay at the office and work for hours on end managing business operations? The excuse of not having time to network is just that: If you are serious about wanting to build and nurture relationships, then you have to recognize that networking is a must-do.
Therefore, you have to leverage your schedule, so that you are able to set aside more than sufficient time for networking activities. Do not look at this as a waste of time. Instead, treat this as an expense that will soon inure to the benefit of the company, and bring in opportunities and gains. Provide as much value as you can.
A relationship is a two-way street, and a healthy and productive relationship is one where both parties benefit and receive value. However, in order to receive value, you also have to provide or give value. Before tapping into a network or creating one, and entering a relationship, the business also has to be fully aware of what it has to offer or bring to the table. This is so it can strengthen its position as a contributor to the network, and make it attractive to others.
It’s Relationship Building, Not Networking
There is a need to add value to the relationship continuously. Your value as a part of the network, and your networking appeal, will diminish or disappear the moment you stop providing or offering value. If you heard of a business opportunity, let the people in your network who may be interested in that opportunity know about it.
If you heard about a job opening in a company, let the people who you know are qualified know about it. If there is a speaking or writing opportunity, think of anyone in your network who may be interested in those gigs. Develop the habit of introducing people and make an effort to connect others.
Networking is not just about you connecting with business contacts. It also involves you acting as a bridge or a conduit from time to time, connecting other parties together. By connecting others, you are actually widening your own network. Introducing people can actually be difficult, which is why not everyone is comfortable doing it. However, it is a skill that must be developed and performed every chance you get.
Practice makes perfect, and this is one of those times. Remember that networking is not just about you.
Networking is done primarily so we can benefit from it. We tend to focus on what others can do for us, more than what we can do for them. As a result, we have a tendency to talk more about what we need, what we want, and what we expect.
Just think that the other people in your network are in it for the same reason as you. You want them to listen to your ideas and inputs. Therefore, you should also be willing to be on the receiving end of their ideas and inputs. Listen to what they have to sayjust as they listen to you. Ask for their thoughts and opinions.
Maybe they need some prodding or a little push for them to open up and share their ideas, thoughts and opinions. Your curiosity will be a point in your favor, because it means you are genuine and authentic in wanting to connect to — and keep connected — with them.
Do not expect your contacts to have the same mindset, outlook or sets of values as you. This is simply impossible. In fact, you have to anticipate that, at some point, there will be differences in opinions. You have to practice keeping an open mind and have no prejudices. Take into consideration the fact that you cannot expect everyone to be the same.
If you are close-minded and unwilling to accept and get over your differences, you will have trouble moving the relationship forward, or nurturing it to make it productive and successful.
Personalize encounters as much as you can.
Relationships are between human beings, not automatons. Networking is all about interaction and communication, so it is important that the approach is as personalized as possible. Meet with them in person.
It's Relationship Building, Not Networking
It could be for a cup of coffee or a full meal. Whatever it is, you have to be there in person. You will know when a business takes networking seriously when they allocate funds for travel, sending their representatives off to other cities and even countries to represent the company and network. Sending emails is another way for businesspeople to connect with their contacts. When this is your mode of communication, make sure the message is personalized and directed to the recipient.
Refer to them by their name, and check that the message specifically targets them. Even when you send them links, personalize them by explaining why you are sending the links to them specifically. Re-introduce, remind, check in, and follow up. One of the main reasons why some fail to build a network and develop a relationship with other businesses is the lack of follow-through.
Remember that networking is also like a game, and there are a lot of players. If you stop playing even before the game has even started, then there is no way you will win, and the other players will move on ahead, leaving you eating their dust.
You should actually expect it, considering how they may be dealing with so many contacts at one time. If you really like an update they make to their website, let them know. The point is to find a way to stay in touch without being annoying. If you get in touch to provide a compliment, that will be appreciated.
Maybe you want to learn more about their business or you want advice on how to grow yours. Offer Help The obvious thing to say at this point is that you need to follow up. You definitely need to follow up and say how much you appreciated the call, but you also need to continue to stay in touch. One way to do this is by offering help. All of these are great ways to stay in touch and to let them know you still appreciate what they do and that you want to help them succeed.
Correcting things too frequently or too strongly will be obnoxious. Send Referrals Another great way to stay in touch is to send referrals. I expect to hear from a lot of people who disagree! When we have fewer connections, we're less overwhelmed and have more bandwidth for keeping the relationships real.
23 Networking Tips for Building Effective Relationships
Keep It Real How many email newsletters do you get each day? What percent of those email newsletters do you actually read? If you're anything like me, it's low. Don't treat your network like an email marketing list.
No advertising jargon, no pitches. Speak in your own voice with no ulterior motives. Eventually, yes, you may wish to talk with contacts about their interest in your products. But before you get there, be real.
Keep It Up Did you meet someone with great expertise on entering a new target market? Has it been six years since you last talked? You need to keep the connections active and reciprocal.