Effective networking is essential to business success. The purpose of networking is to acquire new prospects for your sales or other strategic objectives and to transfer trust they have for their friend to you. The “warm introduction” is always better than the cold call.
Look at your calendar over the past 3 weeks, how many networking appointments have you had? Are they really networking appointments or is it just scheduled time to “catch up?”
Life is very busy for everyone, and you must be conscious of how you spend your time during business hours in order to accomplish your professional goals. But the next time you are scheduling a networking meeting over coffee, breakfast, lunch or after hours, think about these suggestions to make sure you are setting yourself up for effective networking:
- Set goals and/or an agenda with the person you are networking with.
- Be consistent with the people you network with — stay in touch with them, try to schedule a meeting or touch base via phone or email with them at least once a month. Remember: out of sight, out of mind!
- Do not leave the meeting without getting a referral, giving a referral, or bringing some new valuable information about you or your company.
- Being selective is a good thing— only network with people you trust and know you can cross-refer with.
The ABA Insider is published by American Business Advisors, Inc. to provide business and personal improvement information and ideas. All material is presented to provide general and broad information only. The information found in this publication does not constitute business, tax, financial, or legal advice and should not be acted upon without seeking the counsel of professional advisor.