The Brilliance of Networking!
“The Currency of Real Networking is not greed but
Generosity.” Keith Ferrazzi
The Brilliance of Networking!
I hear people in business complain about networking events all the time. ‘Just another rubber chicken’, or ‘I can’t take the time away from business’, or ‘the business won’t prioritize the expense’, are the usual excuses.
You can come away from an event or meeting and not know immediately if you have had impact or any success. The value of showing up is multi-faceted and multi-tiered.
Connections – Building relationships are of value not just to your bottom line, but sometimes having the access to pick up a phone and ask for information or a professional courtesy, and others will ask the same of you. This creates a ‘go to’ mentality that you wish to establish with reciprocity.
Opportunities – Keeping your ‘ear to the ground’ often results in ‘inner circle’ knowledge that creates opportunity. Sometimes just showing up, smiling and listening is all that is needed to gain what you came for.
Great Advice – Like minded business owners will generously share what new edgy tidbits they have come across or let you in on how they recently solved a problem, everything from time management to closing tips! You become a valuable asset to others when you can do the same!
Generation of referrals – Of course this is the most common motivation behind networking, but not always the obvious or immediate return. The client can come to you in a circuitous path generating from the network, or in a delayed chain of events. Patience and persistence will win this end game.
Raise your Profile – Being Visible, known and even expected is a boon to any networking event or meeting. “Where everyone knows your name”. When you network at this level it reinforces your position and value. Your company is familiar and enjoyed by others. This is where you solidify relationships and gain a reputation for being knowledgeable in your field.
Positive Influence – We become like the people we are around the most. Our networking endeavors should be chosen to feed our well-being, not just the work. This is where you can also be a positive representation of your industry.
Increase Confidence – No one begins as a pro at networking, but like anything, the more practice, the better we become. Eye contact, a hand shake, knowing the market, what is exciting at the moment in your circle, share a trend you’ve noticed and some good stand-by, ‘get-to-know-you’ questions are all good ‘go to’ interactions. Your confidence in representing your profession grows with each networking event you attend.
Satisfaction in Helping Others – It is gratifying when the network you have built, sends you referrals and you are of professional service to people. Reputation builds and grows on the positive experience of others. The network gains from access to you. You have often helped other people in business in ways you will not always know. These accomplishments should always be heart felt and become an intangible reward in the measurement of success.