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She Says to Network – Now What?

03-13-15ArticleA few days ago, I was speaking with one of my valued clients about the many benefits of getting out of the office and creating connections and relationships through networking. At one point, there was a momentary silence on the other end of the line and then she asked me if I could give her more “structure” on the best way to network effectively. This question made me stop and think:  I tell my clients to do this ALL the time and yet, I rarely stop and explain WHAT to DO or HOW to do it:

Here are 6 “go to” tips and solutions that work for me every time and I think you will find them useful:

  1. Shhhh! – Let the other person talk first. You have two ears and one mouth for a reason! Listen for clues on HOW you can serve them or discover if your business might be a good fit for the other person. Maybe there’s a possible
    collaboration?
  2. Your Turn – When it’s your turn (unless you’re dealing with a narcissist : -)) share what you do by telling stories about your clients – why they come to you, the result you provide, etc.
  3. Be Yourself! – There’s nothing more exhausting than trying to play the “role” of someone else.
  4. Dress For Success – Whether we like it or not, people make judgments about us based on how we’re dressed. This does not mean you need “designer” everything to make a good impression. It means that you need to look professional and put together as someone who they can believe, like or trust.
  5. The 24 Hour Rule – The 24 Hour Rule – Write a hand-written note or email within 24 hours – you aren’t there to meet everyone in the room. Your intention is to meet 5-7 people who you truly connect with and would like to do business with. Make a point to follow-up with these people right away.
  6. I’d Love a Referral – To get a referral, give a referral. Yes, this is how it works. People are more likely to send you referrals if they see that you are genuinely interested in helping others succeed. Business is about creating relationships.