Networking is an art and has many “unwritten rules”. In order to gain the most out of your networking, its is critical to start on the right foot. Similarly to sports, a false start can not only slow down the game but cost penalties and affect the points in the game. It is important to focus on the right ways to network to gain the best advantage.
Listed below are ways in which savvy networkers can establish a strong foundation for proper business and social dealings.
Do your due diligence and properly prepare for networking events and encounters. Visit the company or association website and familiarize yourself with their mission, goals and membership offerings. If you are attending an event, make sure to rsvp, arrive early and connect with the organizers. At the event, be proactive and socialize with new people and explore the culture and nature of the association.
Before The Sound Off
Just like in sports, before the gunshot or another sound goes off, make sure you positioned correctly. In regards to a networking standpoint, this means that you are accessible for business, can be easily contacted and have the capabilities to do business. These aspects support your credibility, brand and professional presence.
Do not leave your networking to chance. Once you have made good connections follow up and have a strategy in place. Be intentional about building relationships, adding value and communicating your networking goals. Fostering an atmosphere for sharing resources, introductions and expanding networks are also essential.
Use these tips to create a dynamic networking start. Connect and make yourself available to do business and expand your network for success.