Building Your Network
I simply love networking, because I love meeting new people. I enjoy the networking dance, and the opportunity, expectations, chances, and wonder that come with it. Maybe you’ll meet a person with whom you can do business, or maybe you’ll meet someone who is destined to become a new friend. Maybe you’ll even meet someone with whom you will form an alliance. And, just maybe, that person will become your business partner in the future.
All it takes is making a few contacts or even one lasting connection. With networking, there are no limits. There are just limitless possibilities.
Build Relationships to Build Your Best Life
Building relationships, especially lasting relationships, is essential to any business or venture. No matter what path you choose to go down in life, you will never stop working on building relationships. You can supercharge this strategy by serving charitable, civic, community, and business service organizations, through which even more relationships evolve.
When you meet someone, what you always take away are those “first blush” senses and feelings as to whether or not you might build a friendship or professional relationship with them. You make an assessment of their trust, ability, smarts, and other important qualities. However, you cannot be sure, and you will not be sure until you get to know them—if you get to know them. Still, you’re generally more right than wrong about those first blush impressions. So, all you can do is trust yourself and look to follow up with those you meet who, for whatever reason, made your A-list.
While you are encountering and assessing people who may be able to help you, also think about others in your business and personal life, and look out for them. If you have an idea, referral, or prospective opportunity for them, make the connection, pass it along, and help them to succeed. Believe me, if you do this as routinely as you brush your teeth or grab that morning cup of coffee, you will build a mighty network of friends, and the business and good karma will come back to you in spades. I know, with absolute certainty, that doing good and being a positive force for others makes an incredible difference and attracts people to you like a magnet.
I look to meet more people each and every day, because therein lies the best generator of new business. Business development never takes a day off. Existing relationships maintain and sustain, but the new relationships are just as important. A great way to build your network is by connecting with the colleagues and clients of people in your existing database that already know you and, more importantly, already refer business to you. This is truly “the secret” to building an incredibly successful referral-based business.
On another note, since we spend more time working with our colleagues, referral partners, and clients than we get to spend with our own family and friends, it is very important to surround yourself with good people who you enjoy being with. These people will also play a major part helping you advance in your field and grow as a person. And, again, make sure that you also help others advance as individuals and in their careers. The positive energy of giving is very powerful. Be a giver and you will see incredible things happen.
There is no getting away from the fact that being a good networker turns on the confidence and the faith that you have in yourself. It turns on the simple ability to relate to people on their terms and not yours. It turns on knowing all that you could ever possibly need to know about your product, service, art or cause. It turns on your belief in yourself and in knowing that you truly have something of value to offer. Be the best, be yourself, be open and caring, and this tremendous resource will open up doors and unimagined new vistas for you.