Monday, December 12, 2016

Tips On Being A Powerful Networker This New Year- Founders Under 40™ Group Shares



WARNING: Powerful networking and relationships require 110% effort.
In a hyper-competitive global world, and digital world, quality relationships are becoming more important. I personally I’m not the perfect networker however I’m always open to improvement. And I also thought my fellow founders and leaders might enjoy this. All the tips below were written by different authors and edited for clarity. We are not endorsing any authors and / or organization.

Also check out http://mblog.bjmannyst.com/2015/11/improve-your-career-and-life-when-you.html



5 Misconceptions About Networking
A good network keeps you informed. Teaches you new things. Makes you more innovative. Gives you a sounding board to flesh out your ideas. Helps you get things done when you’re in a hurry. And, much more (see my recent Lean In video on how networks augment your impact).

But, for every person who sees the value of maintaining a far-reaching and diverse set of professional connections, many more struggle to overcome innate resistance to, if not distaste for, networking. In my 20 years of teaching about how to build and use networks more effectively, I have found that the biggest barriers people typically face are not a matter of skill but mind-set.

Listening closely to my MBA students’ and executives’ recurrent dilemmas, I have concluded that any one or more of five basic misconceptions can keep people from reaping networking’s full benefits. Which of these are holding you back?

Misconception 1: 


Networking is mostly a waste of time. A lack of experience with networking can lead people to question whether it’s a valuable use of their time, especially when the relationships being developed are not immediately related to the task at hand. Joe, a Latin American executive in a large company striving to promote greater collaboration, for example, told me that every single co-worker who visits his country asks him to meet. Last year alone he had received close to 60 people, a heavy burden on top of the day job. Rightly, he wonders whether it’s the best use of his time.


But, just because networks can do all these things, it doesn’t mean that yours will. It all depends on what kind of network you have, and how you go about building it. Most people are not intentional when it comes to their networks. Like Joe, they respond to requests, and reach out to others only when they have specific needs. Reaching out to people that you have identified as strategically important to your agenda is more likely to pay off.


Misconception 2. 


People are either naturally gifted at networking or they are not, and it’s generally difficult to change that. Many people believe that networking comes easily for the extroverted and runs counter to a shy person’s intrinsic nature. If they see themselves as lacking that innate talent, they don’t invest because they don’t believe effort will get them very far.

Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck has shown that people’s basic beliefs about “nature versus nurture” when it comes to personal attributes like intelligence or leadership skill have important consequences for the amount of effort they will put into learning something that does not come naturally to them. People with “fixed” theories believe that capacities are essentially inborn; people with growth mind-sets believe they can be developed over time.

As shown in a forthcoming academic paper by Kuwabara, Hildebrand, and Zou, if you believe that networking is a skill you can develop you are more likely to be motivated to improve it, work at it harder at it, and get better returns for your networking than someone with a fixed mind-set.

Misconception 3: 


Relationships should form naturally. One of the biggest misconceptions that people have about networking is that relationships should form and grow spontaneously, among people who naturally like each other. Working at it strategically and methodically, they believe, is instrumental, somehow even unethical.

The problem with this way of thinking is that it produces networks that are neither useful to you nor useful to your contacts because they are too homogenous. Decades of research in social psychology shows that left to our own devices we form and maintain relationships with people just like us and with people who are convenient to get to know to because we bump into them often (and if we bump into them often they are more likely to be like us).

These “narcissistic and lazy” networks can never give us the breadth and diversity of inputs we need to understand the world around us, to make good decisions and to get people who are different from us on board with our ideas. That’s why we should develop our professional networks deliberately, as part of an intentional and concerted effort to identify and cultivate relationships with relevant parties.

Misconception 4. 


Networks are inherently self-serving or selfish. Many people who fail to engage in networking justify their choice as a matter of personal values. They find networking “insincere” or “manipulative” — a way of obtaining unfair advantage, and therefore, a violation of the principle of meritocracy. Others, however, see networking in terms of reciprocity and giving back as much as one gets.

One study discovered that views about the ethics of networking tend to split by level. While junior professionals were prone to feeling “dirty” about the instrumental networking they knew they had to do to advance their careers, their seniors did not feel the slightest bit conflicted about it because they believed they had something of comparable value to offer.
The difference came down to confidence or doubt about the worth of their contributions, with junior professionals feeling more like supplicants than parties to equitable exchange. My own research suggests that the only way to conceive of networking in nobler, more appealing ways is to do it, and experience for oneself its value, not only for you but for your team and organization.

Misconception 5: 


Our strong ties are the most valuable. Another misconception that gets in the way of building a more useful network is the intuitive idea that our most important relationships in our network are our strong ties — close, high trust relationships with people who know us well, our inner circle. While these are indeed important, we tend to underestimate the importance of our “weak ties” — our relationships with people we don’t know well yet or we don’t see very often—the outer circle of our network.

The problem with our trusted advisers and circle of usual suspects is not that they don’t want to help. It’s that they are likely to have the same information and perspective that we do. Lots of research shows that innovation and strategic insight flow through these weaker ties that add connectivity to our networks by allowing us to reach out to people we don’t currently know through the people we do. That’s how we learn new things and access far flung information and resources.

One of the biggest complaints that the executives I teach have about their current networks is that they are more an accident of the past than a source of support for the future. Weak ties, the people on the periphery of our current networks, those we don’t know very well yet, hold the key to our network’s evolution.

Our mind-sets about networking affect the time and effort we put into it, and ultimately, the return we get on our investment. Why widen your circle of acquaintances speculatively, when there is hardly enough time for the real work? If you think you’re never going to be good at it? Or, that it is in the end, a little sleazy, at best political?

Mind-sets can change and do but only with direct experience. The only way you will come to understand that networking is one of the most important resources for your job and career is try it, and discover the value for yourself.

***Originally written by Herminia. We are simply sharing and not endorsing anyone.


How Successful People Network with Each Other

As you advance in your career, you have more experience and more connections to draw on for networking. But chances are you’ve also become a lot busier — as have the really successful people you’re now trying to meet. How do you get the attention of people who get dozens of invitations per week and hundreds of emails per day? And how do you find time to network with potential new clients or to recruit new employees when your calendar is packed?

The typical advice that’s given to entry-level employees — Invite people to coffee! Connect with them on LinkedIn! — simply doesn’t work for people at the top of their careers. Instead, you need to leverage an entirely different strategy, something I call “inbound networking.”

In the online world, “inbound marketing” is a term that was popularized about a decade ago by HubSpot cofounders Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah. It refers to the practice of creating valuable content, such as articles or podcasts, that draws customers to you directly (as opposed to spending a lot of time on cold calls or paying for advertising to lure them in).

Networking is facing a similar inflection point. Most professionals are constantly bombarded with Facebook and LinkedIn connection requests, not to mention endless requests to “pick their brain.” Trying to stand out in the midst of that noise is a losing battle, and you probably don’t have time to send a bunch of cold emails anyway.

Instead, you can successfully network with the most prominent people by doing something very different from everyone else: attracting them to you with inbound networking. In other words, make yourself interesting enough that they choose to seek you out. Here are three ways to do it.
Identify what sets you apart. One of the fastest ways to build a connection with someone is to find a commonality you share with them (your alma mater, a love of dogs, a passion for clean tech). That’s table stakes. But the way to genuinely capture their interest is to share something that seems exotic to them. It will often vary by context: In a roomful of political operatives, the fact that I was a former presidential campaign spokesperson is nice but not very interesting. But at a political fundraiser populated by lawyers and financiers, that background would make me a very desirable conversation partner.

The more interesting you seem, the more that powerful people will want to seek you out. And yet it can be hard for us to identify what’s most interesting about ourselves; over time, even the coolest things can come to seem banal. Ask your friends to identify the most fascinating elements of your biography, your interests, or your experiences — then do the same for them. At one recent workshop I led, we discovered that one executive had been a ball boy for the U.S. Open tennis tournament in his youth, and one attorney is an avid and regular surfer in the waters of New York City. Both are intriguing enough to spark a great conversation.

Become a connoisseur. Almost nothing elicits more interest than genuine expertise. If someone is drawn to a topic that you’re knowledgeable about, you’ll move to the top of their list. Since publishing my books, I’ve had innumerable colleagues seek me out to get advice about finding an agent or fine-tuning their manuscripts.

But sometimes it’s even better when your expertise is outside the fold of your profession. Richard, a financial journalist I profiled in my book [Blanked], was able to build better and deeper relationships with his sources after he started to write part-time about food and wine. He discovered that his Wall Street contacts would proactively call him up to get information about hot new restaurants or the best places to entertain their clients.

You can also use nontraditional expertise to build multidimensional connections. Bill Gates and Warren Buffett could certainly have a decent conversation about business. But it’s their expert-level seriousness about the card game bridge that cemented their bond, eventually leading to Buffett’s decision to entrust billions to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

When you’re an expert in a given niche, you can often connect on a level playing field with people who, under other circumstances, might be out of reach. One friend of mine, a corporate executive who produces jazz records on the side, recently got invited to the home of an internationally famous rock star as Grammy campaign season heated up.

If you know a lot about wine, or nutrition, or salsa dancing, or email marketing, or any of a million other subjects, people who care about that topic are sure to be interested in what you have to say.
Become the center of the network. It’s not easy to build a high-powered network if you’re not already powerful. But New York City resident Jon L took the position that the best way to get invited to the party is to host the party. Nearly six years ago, he started hosting twice-monthly “Influencers” dinner gatherings, featuring luminaries in different fields. Levy’s gatherings now attract a guest roster of Nobel laureates and Olympic athletes. But he certainly didn’t start there.

Begin by inviting the most interesting professionals you know and asking them to recommend the most interesting people they know, and over time you can build a substantial network. At a certain point you’ll gain enough momentum that professionals who have heard about the dinners will even reach out to ask for an invitation. As Levy joked to one publication, “One day, I hope to accomplish something worthy of an invite to my own dinner.” When you’re the host, pulling together a great event liberates you to invite successful people who you might not normally consider your peers but who embrace the chance to network with other high-quality professionals.

I’ve also hosted more than two dozen dinner parties to broaden my network and meet interesting people. But that’s certainly not the only way to connect. These days, any professional who makes the effort to start a Meetup or Facebook group that brings people together could accomplish something similar.

The world is competing for the attention of the most successful people. If you want to meet them — and break through and build a lasting connection — the best strategy is to make them come to you. Identifying what’s uniquely interesting about you and becoming a connoisseur and a hub are techniques that will ensure you’re sought after by the people you’d most like to know.

***Originally written by Dorie C. We are simply sharing and not endorsing anyone.


7 Lessons for Better Networking with Social Media
Social media allows us to discover, connect, and engage with new people of interest. While most people are open to new connections and receiving messages from people they don't know, there is a fine line between reaching out and "spamming." The challenge is to make a connection clearly and effectively without wasting people's time.
Many of us are on both sides of this relationship — sometimes making the connection, sometimes receiving the invitation. To help navigate these waters a little better, I've outlined seven key lessons for improving your social networking skills.

1. Find a Person’s Preferred Communication Channel



If you want to contact someone you have never communicated with before, do some research. Find the person’s preferred communication channel. If they have a website, check out their contact page and see if they encourage people to contact them in a particular way, and follow their suggestion.
It also helps to discover what level of participation they have on various social networks (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube) to see which places may be best to engage them. When is the last time they posted on Twitter or Facebook? Do they respond to the @replies they receive on Twitter or comments on a Facebook page? Get a sense of their preferred means of communication, and make contact where they are.
Lesson: Go where they are.

2. Say Just Enough


This cannot be emphasized enough, and it is probably my toughest challenge. In the age of social media, we may be able to get the attention of more people, but we get it for a much shorter amount of time. One of the biggest mistakes I see people make, is that they send long e-mails or social media messages explaining all the reasons they want to connect. You are likely have not earned not earned the five minutes of the recipient's time that it will take to read that message.
Brevity is built right into Twitter, making it a great platform for making a first connection. However, if you use other channels, keep it simple. If there are 700 words you eventually want to get across, include only 50 in the first contact. Let the person choose if he or she would like more. You can fill in the rest later. I prefer a less complete 50 words than 700 words that tell me more than I need to know.
Lesson: Less is more.

3. Don’t Expect a Response


I often see e-mails with phrases like “Please respond,” or “please get back to me.” Unless it is an old friend or a colleague, if you are contacting someone new, you are not entitled to a response. If the person wants to get back to you, he or she will. It is much better to say “If this is not of interest, feel no need to get back to me.”
At times I hear people complain because they reached out to someone and never heard back. The fact is most people do not have the time to get back to everyone who contacts them to say, "not interested." Open a door without adding pressure. There may be times to follow-up, of course, but don’t do so with resentment or frustration.
Lesson: Say what you need to and then let it go.

4. Clarify Early


This may seem like common sense, but don't wait for the last line of your message to say that you want to meet for lunch, or ask your contact if he'd like to speak at an event. Put it right up front. If he cannot provide what you're looking for, he'll know sooner rather than later, and will appreciate you for it.
Lesson: Say it up front.

5. What You Want is Not the Point




You may think that what you want is a phone call or lunch meeting to discuss your big idea. But communication is more than any one project or meeting. What you really want is an authentic connection.

In a very real way, it doesn't necessarily matter if the person is interested in discussing your project idea. What matters is whether you are making a connection.

If you focus on the relationship more than the specific request, and the person has a pleasant experience reading your opening communication, it is likely the door will remain open for possible collaboration in the future, and the next e-mail you send will more likely be fruitful.
Lesson: No one knows what the future may hold, so make the moment count. Ensure the door stays open, even if no one is walking through it right now.

6. Be Open Without Needing


Needy never goes over well. Statements like “I really need to talk to you,” or “it is essential that we speak,” show your general insecurity. There is a huge difference between being open to collaboration and “needing” it.

Do not make contact until you find that place in yourself that is totally comfortable with any outcome, including a strong “no” or no response at all. Only then can you make authentic contact. When you do, openness rather than need will come through in your words.
Lesson: Speak from openness rather than need.

7. Give Space


The key questions people have when someone new reaches out to them, particularly those who are quite busy, are “Do I have time to bring this person into my network? How much time will they take?”
Therefore, it is generally not helpful to send too many e-mails. Doing this may send the signal that you are going to take a lot of the recipient's time and send numerous e-mails every day, and communicating with you will take great effort.
Instead, give communication some space. Unless something is very timely, let a bit of time pass before sending a response. Let communication have some breathing room. Once there is some level of trust, you can experiment with more immediate information exchange.

***Originally written by Soren. We are simply sharing and not endorsing anyone.






 

 

5 Best Practices For Building Relationships On LinkedIn
Building meaningful relationships on LinkedIn is critical to sales lead generation for social sellers. Find 5 Best Practices for getting started.
Are you struggling to grow your network with meaningful connections on LinkedIn?

Perhaps you have hundreds of connections but have been unable to do anything productive (or profitable) with them.

LinkedIn is most effective when you use it as a relationship-building platform.
You can quickly grow a healthy network of relationships that will increase your sales lead generation by changing how you view your LinkedIn connections and by changing how you approach them.
Here are 5 essential best practices you need to follow when developing relationships on LinkedIn.

1. Tell People Why You Want to Connect

If you want to connect with someone, make sure you answer the question; ‘what’s in it for me’?
Did you just meet them at an event? Did someone you both know recommend that you should connect with them? Get into the habit of giving everyone a reason why they should accept your connection request.

If you have never met this person before and you don’t have any common acquaintances or share a group with them, giving them a valid reason to connect becomes even more crucial.
The reason must be valid in the mind of the other person. Just because someone is an ideal prospect for you, does not count as a valid reason for why they should want to connect with you.
Keep in mind that you have a maximum of 300 characters, so your reason for connecting must be short and convincing.

2. Look For Commonalities

It’s always easier to build a relationship with someone when you have something in common.
Fortunately, there are a number of places that you can find this information using LinkedIn and a simple Google search. Review their profile for information such as places, companies, education, experience, or interests in common.

LinkedIn Groups are an excellent resource for this; belonging to the same group will often provide enough similar ground for people to connect.
You can also find helpful information by checking any other social media profiles the person might have.

3. Respect People’s Time

We all value our time; your LinkedIn connections are not exempt from this. Attention spans and free-time are at an all-time low so every communication should provide value.
You’ll start to notice emails, phone calls and messages going unanswered if you are perceived as a time waster. To increase the likelihood of successfully developing relationships on LinkedIn, each interaction with a connection must be respectful and demonstrate how much you value their time.
You can do this first and foremost by exercising the discipline to wait until you have something relevant before reaching out. When you do reach out, always be brief, courteous and to the point.

4. The Power of Reciprocity

When someone does something nice for you, there is a natural psychological urge to return the favor. This effect is known as the Law of Reciprocity and it is a powerful reason why developing meaningful relationships will pay off over time.

Using reciprocity to your advantage when developing relationships can be as simple as introducing two connections that can mutually benefit from meeting each other. This could inspire them to introduce you to one or more of their connections but even if it doesn’t, it’s important that you act without the expectation of receiving anything in return.

Sometimes that means sharing relevant and interesting content that you come across if you believe it’s perfectly catered to an individual’s interests or vocation. Whether it is an article, white paper, eBook, checklist, video or anything else, it should help solve a pain point for them or provide them with education to make an informed decision. You will want to make certain that any content you share, whether your own or someone else’s, looks professional and will leave a positive impression on your connection.

5. Take Your Offline Approach Online

Your relationship building process on LinkedIn should mirror the relationship building strategies you use face-to-face. People often make the faulty assumption that there are different rules of engagement for online and offline relationships. This is a mistake. The process and time involved are the same for both.

Since communications shared within online platforms can come off as impersonal, this is exactly why it is so important to put in the extra time and effort into developing each relationship. You reap the most success by paying attention to the small details and taking the time to personalize and be personable with your connections.

You’re supposed to connect with them, not collect them. LinkedIn can be a goldmine of opportunities but only if you know how to mine your relationships properly.
One of the best ways you can personalize your interactions with your connections is to always address them by name, find commonality and provide them with valuable pieces of content that are relevant to their business or industry.

Make the effort to regularly incorporate each of these best practices into each relationship you start and cultivate on LinkedIn. It won’t be long before you start to grow a powerful network of relationships that can help you to be more successful.

***Originally written by Melonie. We are simply sharing and not endorsing anyone.


10 Business Networking Tips: Grow Your Professional Network

Why Build an Awesome Professional Network?
People do business with people they know, like and trust. Companies don’t make decisions, people do. Your professional network can open doors for you that otherwise could not be opened. For better or for worse, it’s not just what you know or are capable of doing, it’s who you know, that’s important for career advancement and business development. You can also learn a tremendous amount from people in your network who have experience and expertise.

How to Learn How to Build Your Professional Network
After realizing the incredible importance of professional networking, I began scouring the web, Amazon, and bookstores for resources. I found there were resources on related topics, such as interpersonal communication, but not many great resources on business networking specifically.

I began asking everyone I know who has had a successful career, built a successful business, or simply knows a lot of people for their advice on how to build a professional network. After compiling the best advice I received, studying every relevant book and resource I could find, experimenting, and practicing, I learned a lot about how to effectively make new contacts and build relationships.

After years spent practicing and testing new techniques and strategies, making a lot of avoidable mistakes, and meeting and building relationships with lots awesome people, I’ve learned a lot and decided to write a book on it to share my knowledge. Here’s just 10 business networking tips you can use to grow your professional network.

1. Be Helpful

When people in your network get stronger, you get stronger. By helping people in your network get stronger, they may be in a better position to be able to help you in the future. In addition, per the law of reciprocity, people may be more motivated to return the favor.

Share your expertise and ideas. Share information. Promote your network’s work and accomplishments. Be a connector. Business transactions are always mutually beneficial. One person is buying a product or service because it will benefit them in some way, and one person is selling a product or service because they can profit. If you can connect two people you know who would benefit from knowing each other, you can help two people as well as improve the strength of your network

2. Build a Reputation

In a professional setting, people prefer to build business relationships with people they see as being valuable. By building a reputation as someone who is talented, helpful, and valuable, people will be more motivated to meet you and stay in touch with you. Let people know what you’re accomplishing and learning through blogging, emails, and conversations.

3. Be Visible

If no one knows what you’re doing, it’s like it never happened. Maintain regular and consistent with people you want to stay in touch with. Communicate via email, blogging, social networking, and of course, in-person.

4. Meet Lots of People!

The best way to make lucky things happen, is to make a lot of things happen. Go outside. Manufacture serendipity. Ways to meet new people include conferences, events, website meetup,  asking people you know for introductions, reaching out to people directly, personal interest groups, intramural sports leagues, classes and workshops, parties, happy hours, alumni associations, Twitter, and LinkedIn groups.

5. Be Intentional

Go where the people you want to meet hang out both online and offline. Interact with people and build rapport. Share valuable content and spark interesting conversations. Also think about who else spends time with the people you want to meet and connect with them.

6. Think Long-Term

Connections open doors, but relationships close deals. Networking is not just about exchanging business cards and connecting on LinkedIn. Networking is most valuable when long-lasting, mutually beneficial relationships are formed. Relationships take time to build. Be patient. Stay in touch with people you like.

7. Get Rejected!

“If you aren’t getting rejected on a daily basis, your goals aren’t ambitious enough” – Chris Dixon
When you push yourself, in any area of life, you will inevitably face setbacks. In networking, you will face a lot of rejection. People will ignore your calls and email. They will decline meeting invites, and requests for introductions. Trying and failing is much better then not trying at all. At least when you try you have a chance to succeed. Learn from your rejections and grow stronger for when it happens again.

8. Listen

Listening is one of the most valuable, yet commonly overlooked, skills to have in networking and in business. People love to talk about themselves and appreciate when you take a genuine interest in what they have to stay. Listening will help you to get to learn about peoples’ challenges and get to know them better, which can ultimately lead to more productive professional relationships. Ask open-ended questions, be genuinely interested, and express interest and curiosity.

9. Ask

You never know until you ask, and more often than you think, you will get the answer you want. Ask for introductions. Ask people you want to meet to meet with you. Ask for advice.

10. Follow Up

Build a reputation as someone who delivers on their promises and is persistent. Follow up with on people who promised to do something for you. Follow up on on emails you send that get ignored. Do what you promised to do for others.

***Originally written by Mike. We are simply sharing and not endorsing anyone.



7 Habits You Should Ditch for Better Networking
Networking is one of the key components to getting a job, keeping your job, and moving along your career path. It’s a vital part of your career development, no matter what stage of your career you’ve reached. Bad habits can derail your networks and take you off track. Here are 7 habits you should ditch for better networking.

1. The temptation to network only with people like you.

The goal of networking is to meet new people who may open new opportunities. Always look for ways to network with people who think differently, who have different jobs, or have different skill sets. And don’t feel like it’s beneath you to network with those younger or inexperienced. You may find your next intern, or even the next Mark Zuckerberg. Try going into events with an open mind and find something interesting from each conversation. You’ll find that you’ll have a much more robust network when you go outside your comfort zone and meet people who you may not interact with on a daily basis.

2. The excuses.

I’m too tired. I’m too busy. I don’t know what to say. It’s too late. These are all excuses that can derail your networking strategy. Rather than making excuses, find strategies to overcome them. When you prioritize growing your professional network, you’ll find the time and energy to do it right. Make a plan, find the times and groups, and plan ahead with topics of interest. You’ll meet more people and be much more successful with your networking efforts when you leave the excuses out of your strategy.

3. The bad attitude.

Networking can be hard. It’s easy to have a negative attitude about the process if you go in with the wrong intentions. Check your attitude at the door and find the good in each encounter you make. By staying positive and keeping your ego in check, you’ll find many more opportunities that are valuable than you might think.

4. Your shyness.

Some people are more shy than others, and networking can be very difficult if you get nervous around people. With that in mind, networking events are oftentimes most useful for more introverted people. It’s an opportunity where it’s socially acceptable (and even encouraged) to walk up to strangers and talk to them. Jump out of your comfort zone and start a conversation. Practice makes perfect.

5. The urge to ask for more than you receive.

Too often people expect something from those they network with. Whether it’s help, knowledge, funding, recommendations, or advice, those that get the most out of their networking connections are the ones who give the most. Help others first, and you could receive much more in return. Find things you are good at and offer them to the community. You will find that when you have needs, people will jump through hoops to help you when you’ve opened doors for them.

6. The internet-only approach.

LinkedIn is a great tool, but it can become a crutch. Attend events, take part in conferences, and spend time on your craft outside of work. You’ll find that a connection forged with a handshake is going to hold up much more than one based solely online. Use tools like LinkedIn to keep up with your network, but never forget that the best way will always be in person.

7. The bad communication.

Answer your emails. Follow-up on voicemails. And don’t skip the small talk. In a world of technology where the personal touch is easily lost, being diligent about how you communicate is vital. There are few things more impressive when networking than being accessible and responsive. You will make a name for yourself as someone who is dependable, and you’ll get the most out of your networking opportunities.

Building a great network can take time and hard work, but the benefits are staggering. Don’t let bad habits keep you from reaching your potential and souring your hard work. Ditch the bad habits and be a networking superstar.

***Originally written by Kyle. We are simply sharing and not endorsing anyone.


70 20 10: A Formula for Successful Networking
Shortly after starting my business in 2008, a friend of mine introduced me to Mike S, who’s business, [Blanked], helped consultants and other small businesses develop and execute their social media strategy. I learned a lot from working with Mike, but the biggest take away was a very simple rule for networking: 70 20 10.

When Mike taught me this formula, we were specifically talking about how to best utilize social media to develop and create awareness around my brand, but this formula is a great guide for face-to-face networking and nurturing productive relationships in general.


70

When building relationships face to face or via social media you want people to see you a trusted resource. So, make sure 70% of your interactions or their exposure to you is you being just that – a resource. You know that guy at the chamber event or that gal on your Facebook page that only talks about themselves and what they do for a living? Don’t be like them. I have a Facebook contact who I know is trying to make the world a better place, but the only thing I see him post about is the BMW he drives and telling everyone how great his business is. Be a resource.

The only way you can truly be a resource to the people around you is to understand what they are about. What do they like? What don’t they like? What are they interested in? What are they passionate about? What motivates them? When you begin to understand these things, make an effort to give them what they value. The more you do this, the more they will see you as a resource. The more they see you as a resource, the more they will trust you. I don’t care if it’s a business or personal relationship: if there is no trust, there is no relationship.


20

When people see you as a resource and trustworthy, their walls come down and they are more interested in you. 20% of the time, allow people to get to know you better. While making an effort to relate to them, talk about the things in the world you find value in, engage people in conversation about things you’re passionate about, talk about your kids, or the football game, or the movie you saw. Forget about business and have fun getting to know each other. People work with others whom they trust and like. Let them get to know the real you.


10

When people trust and like you, they are more willing to take time to learn about and support your purpose, mission, and/or business. If you have shown you care about them and have invested time and energy in them, they will be more willing share their resources with you, be it their energy, time, or money. Talk about you and whatever it is you are trying to accomplish only 10% of the time.

No doubt about it: the only way you are going to be successful is if people know what you do. So, tell them. Just don’t make your sales pitch your identity. If you only talk about yourself and what you do, you are going to be known as the guy or gal who only talks about themselves and what they do. If you only talk to people when you need something from them, they will start to avoid you. If you only call them to talk about your business, they will screen your calls. You smell what I’m cooking?


70 20 10

I try to utilize this formula in all my relationships and it has yet to lead me down the wrong path.
Be a resource and build trust. Get to know each other and create connection. Do both effectively and your business efforts will be more efficient and your conversations will be more meaningful.

***Originally written by Mike. We are simply sharing and not endorsing anyone.

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