Networking can lead to success. It gives you access to a wide variety of opportunities with jobs and customers. Because of the advances in technology, anyone can build a network and find the right connections. It all comes down to how you’re investing your time and resources and the strategies you employ.
There is no perfect solution to guaranteeing success when building your network. If you keep the right attitude and set high expectations of yourself, then you can learn a lot about other people and about yourself. Here are some tips to help you become the best networker possible.
It is tempting to try and build a persona that you think others want to see. This can lead to superficial behavior that doesn’t showcase your real personality. Whether a potential connection is browsing LinkedIn or at a conference, they want to meet real people, not walking advertisements. So, when networking, let people see the real you. They will appreciate it more in the long run.
Be Honest and Direct
A lot of people believe that to be a good networker, they need to impress everyone they speak with. You do want people to remember you but you want them to remember the authentic you. Be confident in who you are what you have to offer and people will gravitate towards you, remember you, and want to help you by referring to you.
Many professionals think of networking as a transactional process. However, you should build your network of the real interactions with other people. If your network is based on your individual relationships with each person, the circle of people you cultivate will last longer and be more legitimate. This means asking questions that aren’t just about the person’s work life but getting to know them personally.
Meet in Person
Creating a networking circle through email is possible. Yet, when you meet someone in person, it will take your relationship with them to another level. Go to networking events and start meeting people face-to-face. This will provide you with an opportunity to create deep connections more quickly.
Get There Early
When you attend a networking meetup, try to get there a few minutes early. This will show that you care about the event and have made it a priority. It also shows organizational skills and that you know how to organize a schedule. People are more likely to work with someone who proves their value through prompt arrival.
Offer Expertise for Free
Remember that you’re not the only person looking for connections and opportunities. Everyone else is trying to further their own companies and careers as well. You can help them by providing free resources. Offer your expertise in a subject without expecting anything in return. It doesn’t have to be something huge. You can simply make strategy recommendations based on what you know or offer advice about something you have knowledge. Five minutes of your time can set up a connection that will last a long time.
Follow Up With New Contacts
If you’re looking for a way to show people you care about the connections you’ve made, then a simple follow-up email can help you achieve this. Make use of any notes you took or tidbits that you remember so that your email is personal to the individual. You can also ask follow-up questions through an email.
Have Specific Questions
You can’t get help from others if you don’t tell them what you want. If you have a specific question about a subject, then it’s much more likely that people can provide specific answers related to your subject matter.
Rather than trying to impress everyone you meet, try to make a lasting impression instead. You can make you and your brand memorable in several ways. Try to tell an interesting story or share a unique experience.