“Your network is your net worth.” – Porter Gale
This blog post follows my previous article on “How to Network like a Pro”. I will break down the concept of networking for those who are just starting their networking journeys.
Networking is one of the most powerful tools for businesses and professionals. Who you know makes a big difference in scaling your business and facilitates a forum to share information. Forming strong working relationships, however, takes time, patience and trust, whether it’s with your colleagues, existing customer base, or new clients. Networking is the tried and true way to not only make new connections, but strengthen existing ones.
In today’s world, networking can be undertaken via Internet and face-to-face. Social media platforms such as LinkedIn give us the opportunity to create network foundations before even meeting new colleagues or clients.
In this fast-paced society, organizing a meeting can be an extreme challenge, therefore who you know is key!
Here are three tips to create a successful meeting:
Most people say their first impressions are impacted by presentation and handshakes. First impressions can have an instant effect on any prospecting relationship. It’s important that you present yourself and your business, professionally at any networking event. You may want to practice introducing yourself and your company with a colleague if you feel nervous. However, you don’t want to sound rehearsed when meeting someone! So remember to keep it appropriate and pleasant, and refrain from jumping into sales pitches!
More frequently, networkers want to network more, but are too busy. Therefore it’s all about choosing the right event for you, by determining your interests, skills and ultimate goal. Look for what excites you, what interests you, and what you want to achieve, and prioritize appropriately.
If you find yourself pressed on time to effectively network, then perhaps social media can help you. Digital networking is equally important as internal and external networks. The impact of sites such as LinkedIn give us space to communicate with others on a global scale with just one touch of a button. Therefore, take advantage of what technology enables!
Just as networking face-to-face however, it is important to determine your interest, skills and ultimate goal to make sure your core values align with future business partners.
No matter the approach you take, the power of networking is vital! The right connection might just change your working lives for the better. Networking will no doubt continue to be a positive and popular tool for every business employee out there.