Do You Know How to Network?

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photo courtesy of Alexander Baxevanis @ flickr.com

I decided to start looking for a new job. I reached out to people I know to ask if they knew if anybody had open positions in their company. My friend told me the company she worked for was hiring and told me how to apply. I got my application in and the process started. I tell you this to encourage you about the possibilities of networking.

Networking is a great way to help others and help yourself. You help others by being encouraging to them and what they do. You help yourself by having name recognition, and when someone needs your service they will think of you first. Networking is not about you and your needs but building relationship. Don’t think of networking as being out there to sell or pitch your idea or product. You want to sell yourself so that people remember you in a good way. Sometimes you will get that person who is going to be there to help you and will want to hear about your ideas or products.

Today we have all kinds of ways to network:

  • People we already know
  • People we meet in public
  • Networking events
  • Online social networks

Think about the people you already know in your life. Look at your family and friends. How can you serve them? Do you have a relative who is thinking about starting a business and you can offer advice or assistance to help them get started? People you know could connect you to people who can help you or you help them. Just today I had someone who I have known most of my life connect me with someone I have met before to help me advance my career. Talk about what you want to do with your career with people you know so they can help or lead you to people that can. It could be help they provide or that you provide.

Have you ever just started a conversation with someone while waiting in line to get coffee? If you have the ability to connect with people you meet in public think of how to develop those relationships. I recommend you get that person’s contact information. If you give them your business card it could end up in the trash can after you leave. You want to build relationships and that can be hard if you are waiting for the other person.

There are many professional networking events you can attend. These events are great to meet the business professionals in your area. Attend events in other locations. The millionaires who built wealth network at many of these events.

Online social networks like LinkedIn can be a great tool. You can connect with people you know. You can discuss topics online. Some people feel more comfortable at first starting out online before face to face meetings. Today business people have set up online networking with business development. I like Dan MillerMichael Hyatt, and Jevonnah “Lady J” Ellison. Sometimes you pay for business development but also it is about networking and connecting with other.

Networking is a great way to build relationships with people, build your business, and develop new businesses.

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