Sunday, January 10, 2010

Become a Prominent Networker

Networking is an art as much as a business strategy. It is also a skill that can be learned, and one that you require if you want to be successful in the current business arena.

There are many tricks to networking, however, you don't have to be a magician to learn this valuable ability, you just have to pay attention to several details and be conscious about the way in which you approach people:

1. Adapt your attitude
Networking is about helping others; it is a way of life, and as it comes, it goes. It takes advantage of the laws of the universe, which will always rule it.

2. Evaluate your network
Be sure to know whom you know. Make a list of all the people you know, including your hairdresser, the cashier at the supermarket, your mechanic, your accountant, your dentist, and even your favorite waiter. Important 'titles' mean nothing, you never know who will lead you to someone who can truly help you.

3. Relate to people of all ages and backgrounds who are good professionals
You can learn valuable things from everyone you meet. You can find mentors anywhere and everywhere. Offer to help them from the heart, and ask for help confidently.

4. Form a network before you need something
Attending business networking events, community organizations, or chambers of commerce only when you need them for something is not going to take you anywhere but down. In networking, you don't look out for yourself, instead, as you look out for others, the help you need will come your way.

5. Stay visible
You have to be everywhere and get known. Say yes to every invitation, even if you want to say no, other successful networkers will be there too.

6. Become a matchmaker
Help your contacts meet the people who can help them meet their needs. Only the most powerful people are selfless enough to help others succeed without a personal interest in the match.

7. Keep in touch
Just call or write to say hi and to ask how things are going. Invite people to lunch or coffee, just to have a good time learning more about them, no hidden motives involved

8. Keep people informed
When someone refers you, gives you an idea, or a lead, keep them informed of your progress so that they know to what extent they were useful. It is just simple, but deep, courtesy.

9. Value small talk
If you think small talk is BS talk, excuse me, but you're a snob. The intelligent networker knows that small talk leads to big talk, because this is how we bond.

10. Have manners
The best of the best are always respectful, courteous, and gracious, and they always acknowledge others for their help and support.

11. Reciprocate
Give back your support, help, and advice. In fact, if possible, be the first to give all these to others, and expect nothing in return.

12. Follow up
For effective business networking, you have to stay in the loop as to how your contacts are doing after you helped them, in this way; you ensure they will be there for you when your time comes.

By : Jonathan_Boyd

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