Common but vital sense for networking
Networking is one of those things all of us are told to do regularly, yet most of us confess we could do better and more often. Networking Thoughtfully: The 30 Minute Read That Could Change Your Life is a speedy read that promises to help you.
Children are perfect role models in how to network, says the author Martin Wheadon. They are opinionated, talk without fear of rejection, laugh a lot and are good at both introducing people they meet to friends and at staying in touch.
Networking, he says, is not just for winning new business or making new business associates – it will also bring you up to date with events in your industry.
The book reads as a series of 30 lessons, the most memorable of which is to be “interesting” for seven seconds and “interested” the rest of the time in any conversation. This way, you are most likely to get to the nub of what the person you are chatting to is looking for – and how you can fill their gap. “Your thinking or mindset should be: ‘What can I do for them?’ not: ‘What can this person do for me?’” he writes. Wheadon also recommends you know your own unique selling point and can translate that into 10 reasons why someone should want to buy from you. Turn the features of your product or service into benefits by inserting the phrases “which means …” and “which will result in you having …”, he says.
Separate out the business cards you collect at events into longterm possibilities from business opportunities you can take advantage of straight away.
Write the date, event and a snippet of something interesting on the back. And if you accept a card, do contact the person.
Do not ever be afraid to ask for business or to ask a person if they know someone else who could help you, says Wheadon.
This is a quick and easy read, although most of the tips are common sense. But it might provide the incentive you need to get out there networking.
After all, networking is powerful. Consider this: almost half of jobs are filled by networking, rather than recruiters or job boards, according to a 2013 study by Right Management.
The book is published by Troubadour and available to buy on Amazon.com in paperback for US$8.58 or on Kindle for $4.93.