[hidepost=2]Well, we have come to the final lesson in the Networking Know How short course. I sure hope you have enjoyed your lessons and learned a lot about using networking to build your business.
This concept of networking has been around for decades, and it won’t disappear any time soon. The reason for its popularity is simple, “it works!”
Yes, it requires some work, dedication and persistence before you begin to see the rewards, but once you set up a solid network, your business will become more successful and profitable than you ever dreamed possible.
As we have been discussing in the last few lessons, effective business networking is all about meeting and building beneficial relationships with like minded people. It is about building trust, and seeing how your relationship can genuinely help others, so that you can reap the rewards of a owning a successful and profitable business.
Today we are going to quickly go over a few tips that will help you to maximize your results, make more productive contacts and become a networking super star.
– Always figure out before you even walk into a room, what your specific goals are in attending each networking meeting. This helps you to pick groups or associations that will help you get what you are looking for.
– Ask open-ended questions during your networking conversations, questions that ask who, what, where, when, and how. Try to avoid questions that require a simple yes or no response. By using this line of questioning you can open us the discussion and show listeners that you are interested.
– Become a walking resource center. When you become known as a strong resource, others remember to turn to you for suggestions, ideas, names of other people, etc. This keeps you at their “top of mind”.
– Make sure you have your “elevator speech” prepared and know it like the back of your hand. An elevator speech is the commonly known as the response you would give in the amount of time it would take to reach the tenth floor in an elevator. Always rehearse your spiel and be genuine, so that you don’t sound automated when you relay it to someone who asks what you do.
– Always know what is going on in current affairs, if you don’t feel comfortable just rolling into a spiel when you first meet someone, have a back up topic to break the ice until you do.
– Never just throw your business card at someone the minute you meet them, you must get to know the person and their business as well as explaining your business before you even contemplate a business card exchange. Some people will find you rude, pushy and unprofessional which will in turn reflect badly on your business.
– Always phone or email your new contacts and let them know that you enjoyed meeting them. If possible mention things that you discussed on a more personal note (i.e. I hope you enjoyed that movie you were going to see that night.) people will come to know you as someone who listens, remembers them and they will form a trust with you.
– The most important thing to remember is to follow through quickly and efficiently on referrals you are given. When people give you referrals, your actions are a reflection on them. Respect and honor their trust and your referrals will grow exponentially.
When it comes to successfully networking for your business it is important that you always remember that the success of your business depends on the quality of your network.
That concludes our “Networking Know How Short Course.” I hope that it has provided you with valuable information on building your network of contacts and that what you have learned helps you and your business grow and succeed.