Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James

Sunday, February 28, 2010

What’s Important When You Refer People?

Filed under: Guest Author Articles,Networking — Larry James @ 6:00 am
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Ivan Misner, Guest Author –

I just finished a survey of over 12,000 business people from all around the world on the subject of networking. One of the questions we asked the respondents was “Which of the following is most important to you when referring business to others?” The choices were:

ivanmisner

1. Knowing a person’s character.
2. Knowing a person’s level of competency.
3. Using the person’s product or service myself.
4. Knowing a person’s success.

Notsurprisingly, “knowing a person’s character” ranked as number one in the survey. Interestingly, “using the product or service myself” ranked third out of the four choices! This is important to understandwhen buildingyour own personal network of people referring you becauseit shows that people are definitely looking at more than just the quality of your products and services when they think about referring you to other people.

Often times, we think that the best source of referrals must be our clients, customers, or patients. Although they definitely are a good source, they are notour only source. In fact, based on this survey,personally usingand experiencing another person’sproduct or services before referring business to that person was not as important to the respondents as other factors.

What this means to you is–you need to build your credibility with people who know you (whether they’ve used your business ornot). If people trust your character and competency, they are likely to refer you regardless of whether they’ve actually used your products or services.

This is an important paradigm shift for many people. It means that many of your referrals may actually come from people other than your clients – if you learn how to network effectively.

netHQ

Copyright © 2010 – Ivan Misner. Reprinted with permission. Called the father of modern networking, Dr. Ivan Misner is the Founder of BNI and the senior partner for the Referral Institute. He has written nine books, including his New York Times best seller, Truth or Delusion? Busting Networking’s Biggest Myths.

Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. His latest book is, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Visit ” Networking HQ!”

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

letsbefriends2

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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Join the Networking “Huddle!”

Filed under: Networking,Networking Article — Larry James @ 6:00 am
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Some churches have huddle groups that pray and teach the Bible. Businesses have huddle groups that help develop the culture and activity of their business. Football players utilize the huddle to let everyone know the next play. Some Social Media groups have huddles. Even Emperor penguins have developed a social behavior that when it gets cold, they huddle together in groups that may comprise several thousand penguins.

huddle1jpgThere is an online place to huddle at www.huddle.net. It is a distinctive web-based workspace for project teams, freelancers, consultants, agencies, clubs and any other business network that needs team members to work together.

Networkers can develop huddle groups of selected people who are committed to help each other. It’s a getting together of your “closest” networking friends to brainstorm about promotional ideas, sharing expertise, business stratagies, solutions to mutual problems, etc. It is similar to a “Master Mind Group.”

A Networking “huddle” group is very different than a networking meeting. It’s about collaborating on a much smaller scale than networking meetings. No leads or sales pitches.

First, you need a like-minded professional network of your own. You choose who will be in the group initially, and as the group matures, others may have ideas of who to invite to join you. Before allowing others into your group, it’s important to screen them to make sure they’ll fit into the existing group and that their commitment level is high. You also need to find the time to get to your “huddle” group meetings and remain accountable to your fellow “huddle” group members. This is part of your community.

karyngreenstreetKaryn Greenstreet, author of “How to Start a For-Profit Mastermind Group,” says, “Even with a screening process your group is likely to run across people who say that they’re committed but then don’t participate, or who say that they’re honest but then fail to keep the trust of the group. Be prepared to ask people to leave the group who are not participating up to the group standard and do it quickly once the poor behavior becomes evident. A “slacking” member will bring down the energy and fun level for the whole group.”

There is synergy of energy, commitment, and excitement that participants bring to a “huddle” group. A great advantage is that participants raise the bar by challenging each other to create and implement goals, brainstorm ideas, and support each other with total honesty, respect and compassion. “Huddle” participants act as catalysts for growth, devil’s advocates and supportive colleagues.

One group I am aware of meets for only about 15 minutes each week: a micro-meeting. They meet at exactly 8:47 a.m., stand, rather than sit and there is no food served. It truly is a close group of about 5 or 6 people who huddle around the table. Each has just a few minutes to tell what they are working on and request assistance from the group on a specific project. Responses are short and quick to the point. Others take notes and call that member with suggestions after the meeting.

“There is no need to tolerate negative people when you and I are surrounded by people of higher consciousness. It’s time to refine who and what we define as our community.” – David Bell

A similar concept of the “huddle” group was formally introduced by Napoleon Hill in the early 1900’s. In his timeless classic, “Think And Grow Rich” he wrote about the Mastermind principle as: “The coordination of knowledge and effort of two or more people, who work toward a definite purpose, in the spirit of harmony.”

You will gain tremendous insights, which can improve your business and personal life. Your “huddle” group is like having a objective board of directors.

Now you know. It’s time to create your own “Networking Huddle!”

netHQ

Copyright © 2010 – Larry James. Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. His latest book is, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Visit ” Networking HQ!”

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

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NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Acting a Fool

Desiree Rose Ford, Guest Author –

Let me paint a picture for you: I am at beautiful “Geisha A Go Go” in downtown Scottsdale enjoying a beautiful night of networking at the Young Professionals Networking event. I am sipping my water, chatting with a young woman who is telling me about her ambitions and capabilities when very abruptly and loudly a young man comes barreling over.

After loudly and rudely saying “What’s up ladies?” he forces his business cards (a beige, thick card stock with a green embossed logo, very nice) upon us. At this point it is completely clear that he has hit the bar, watching him webble and wobble back and forth with sweat seeping from his head while he invaded our personal space bubbles.

We both politely took his card and exchanged them with our own. He commences with telling us about his company. It was like listening to a recording, that slurred, but we both kept smiling and listening. I then asked him, so what is the best part of your amazing job? He actually had no answer; he just stood there with a blank look on his face. He works a place that would be filled amazing things about his job and he was too far gone to answer.

After we briefly told him about our companies, he said his farewells and headed back to the bar. I turned and look at the young woman I was speaking with and we simultaneously said “Oh, my God!” We both couldn’t believe that someone who was representing their company would be foolish enough to let them self drink to that embarrassing state.

Please, remember whenever you are out talking with people it is an opportunity to network and talk about your business. You are at that moment the face of your company; you are who that person will do business with. Don’t ruin it with a lack of self control and foolishness. There is nothing wrong with drinking and having a good time, but there is something wrong with drinking excessively and networking with strangers.

Be mindful of your choices and make sure to represent you and your company in a positive light.

By the way, I got no follow up from the young man.

Read: “What About Business Cards. . .

netHQ
desiree

Copyright © 2010 – Desiree Rose Ford. Desiree is a Marketing representative for BizCard.com by day and a Freelance Artist by night. Enjoying nothing more than shoes, art and connecting with others, she just wants to make sure everyone is having their needs meet through their businesses. You can visit www.DesireeFord.com to review her artist portfolio and follow her blog at http://BusinessCardChronicles.blogspot.com/ to make sure you are using your business cards to fullest potential and getting expert advice on networking with your business cards.

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
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NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

How to Brag About Yourself Without Turning Others Off

Filed under: Networking Article,Self-Promotion — Larry James @ 6:00 am
Tags: , , , ,

Great shameless self-promoters know how to do this. They know that if they don’t toot their own horn, who will? I’m willing to bet that you were taught that it is rude to blow your own horn, right? Wrong! If you do it right!

Baseball great, Dizzy Dean, once said, “It ain’t bragging if you done it.”

toothornIn her book, “Brag! The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn Without Blowing It,” Peggy Klaus wrote, “Good self-promoters know this: They’re always planting seeds for the future. Karen, forty-two, a division head for a major global food corporation, is a good example. At an informal gathering, when asked how long she had been in the business and what she did, instead of the typical “I’ve worked with my company for fifteen years and run its dairy division,” she responded:

Who ever thought I’d be in the food industry, especially after my mom forced me all those years to eat Cheez Whiz? [Everyone at the table erupted with laughter.] It must have been fate, but after I graduated with my MBA from Columbia, I got a call from a friend who told me about a few interesting openings. I began working for my company in 1985 in brand management, working my way up to marketing director.

Brag!Two years ago, one of the company’s other divisions was really in the hole and they gave me the assignment of turning it around. I didn’t really know where to start, so I began talking to people on the floor. A lot of them had great ideas. From there, I got everyone involved and formed teams to pull in the various disciplines and put together a strategic vision. Today, I am the proud head of a dairy division that is number two in profitability worldwide.”

You may want to take a moment and analyze how Karen cleverly got everyone’s attention, bragged about herself in a great story about her work and did it without turning anyone off. She made it sound like she was sharing information. Knowing when and how to brag is a learned art.

Klaus says, “Humility does not get you noticed. Very few of us ever learn how to reconcile the virtue of humility with the need to promote ourselves. When education and training do focus on selling ourselves, we’re taught to pay the greatest care and attention to our wardrobe, our hair, our hygiene, our table manners, and our résumé. Get those things right, it’s a slam dunk! There’s very little instruction on selling ourselves with ease and sincerity. Somehow we think if we personalize our message or get too excited, we are not being professional, when in fact this is exactly what makes us effective self-promoters.”

Smart self-promoters show up prepared. They value face time with others and are always ready with stories about themselves that break through the verbal clutter.

If you do great work and no one knows about it… what then? Most networkers are lousy at talking about themselves and their accomplishments. They remain quiet thinking that others will toot their horn for them. Life doesn’t work that way.

Dare to promote yourself. Stop apologizing for your successes! Promoting yourself is important if you want to move up in the world. You are most likely to get a few “atta girl” and “atta boys” from your networking buddies. Celebrate your successes. Do it gracefully and tastefully. And if you learn to brag with finesse, you may find others begin to also come out of their shell. It’s a freeing experience.

It’s time for you to get over the self-promotion myths that hold you back. Learn the art of the brag. As Klaus explains, bragging is an art, an individual form of self-expression and communication that, once mastered, is the key to opening doors.

When someone says something good about you, what do you do? Many people, especially women, have the tendency to deflect compliments that come their way. Instead, smile, look the person in the eye and say, “Thanks. Coming from you that really means a lot.” You’ll be taking the person’s compliment graciously while flattering him or her at the same time.

Most people think they have two choices when it comes to self-promotion: remaining obscure or sounding obnoxious. Neither works.

Move forward. I hereby give you permission to say what you should be saying!

Brag on!

netHQ

Copyright © 2010 – Larry James. Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. His latest book is, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Visit ” Networking HQ!”

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

letsbefriends2

Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
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Friday, February 12, 2010

Missed Opportunities

Filed under: Networking,Networking Article — Larry James @ 6:00 am
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Did you every attend a networking event and scan the group to look for someone to network with? Sure you have.

And have you ever made eye contact with them, made a snap judgment about their appearance or who they were with and thought, “That doesn’t look like someone I would like to meet.”? Sure you have.

Later. . . you see them again. Their energy calls to you and you glance over at them and for the second time you pass them by. Then before you know it, they are gone. The possibility of making a connection had passed. Who is the loser here?

Could that have been a missed opportunity?

shakinghands2Those of you who silently answered, “No,” are most likely more interested in finding someone to talk about you with rather than to make a new connection and investigate the possibility of a new relationship for mutual long-term gain for the both of you.

Others who have that nagging feeling that you could have, should have made the connection, normally could have been a player in that moment, yet for reasons you have yet to understand, you hesitated and in that moment of hesitation, opportunity was lost.

Don’t do that again! Missed opportunities are worst than making a mistake.

You have to recognize when the right place and the right time fuse and take advantage of that opportunity. There are plenty of opportunities out there. You can’t sit back and wait. – Ellen Metcalf

You can never tell what risks will pay off ahead of time, however you do know that if you don’t take any risks and at least reach out for new relationships with networkers, you will not reap any rewards.

Who knows whether you could have assisted them in their hour of need. Perhaps they just needed to be recognized and acknowledged. Maybe they know someone you need to know and could have helped you in a very special way.

Dale Carnegie once said, “You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.”

Never discount the fact that sometimes reaching out to someone new can simply be a bonding experience that allows you to make a new friend and only a new friend. Everyone you meet will not be in a position to help you – or you them.

So what opportunities are you missing now?

Opportunities are everywhere. Be more spontaneous! Look at strangers with fresh eyes. Look for possibilities. Never squander the opportunity to meet a new friend. Never miss the chance to say something helpful to someone or to reveal something of ourselves to someone new. Who knows, it may have been just what they needed to hear in that moment.

Many opportunities have been missed because we make snap judgments without giving opportunity a chance to show itself. Today make a specific intention of correcting this networking flaw.

Imagine the possibilities!

netHQ

Copyright © 2010 – Larry James. Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. His latest book is, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Visit ” Networking HQ!”

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

NOTE: All articles and networking tips written by Larry James that are listed in this BLOG are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com

NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Can You Handle the Truth?

Filed under: Guest Author Articles,Networking — Larry James @ 6:00 am
Tags: , ,

Nancy Marmolejo, Guest Author –

Bubbles are bursting left and right as the voices of frustrated entrepreneurs air their grievances against solutions that may or may not work as well as the sales pages promise.

There’s a lot of “truth” going around, but is it really truth or is it hidden anger? I’m not a psychologist, I’m simply a student of human nature, but the amount of criticism and guru bashing going on is making me wonder.

Jack NicholsonI started seeing it in November (2009) when a big buzz around Ali Brown’s Shine event erupted. I didn’t attend the event, but a lot of people weren’t crazy about her new direction and took their issues very publicly. I think it was brave and courageous for the people who spoke up, but after a while it started to sound like a barrage of negativity. I got the message that it wasn’t all that it was cracked up to be, but after the 25th rant, it started to get old.

Then I saw others continue the trend (but taking it a notch higher) by naming names of marketers they didn’t like. Seriously… is that worth making a video or blog post over?

I think it’s important to share one’s opinion. In fact, I’ve shared my opinion plenty of times in this blog on things that I see simply don’t work. But jeez, I don’t scream out names, I do want to leave some dignity there!

Sure it’s fun to dish, but when you start being known for that (even in the name of Truth), people will forget about your wonderful talents and only focus on the fact that you’ve got a bone to pick with the world.

And trust… would you hire someone who talks crap about others? How do you know they’re not going to leave a knife in your back one day?

It’s important people speak up, but how about taking the high road and going for a constructive outcome? Otherwise it’s just a bunch of finger pointing.
As I ponder this, I realize a couple things:

1. Some people love the fight.

There are some people who love to be confrontational and get a big kick out of fighting and negativity. They thrive on it. I’m sure there’s a big unhealed emotional wound fueling the fire. I hope they get their heartbreak resolved or whatever is creating so much anger.

2. Cyber culture promotes drive by criticisms.

Just go on Yelp… the other day while looking for a shoe repair, I stumbled upon a review where the reviewer went on and on how PSYCHO the owners were. Who’s more psycho, the insane shoe repair owners or the customer who wrote the entire saga in morbid detail and LOTS OF CAPS which ended up sounding like someone’s therapy homework?

3. You Don’t Have to Play Along

I’m glad I hang with people who consider themselves heart based entrepreneurs, mission driven, and guided by a sense of doing good. We need more of you to turn things to the positive! I’m not saying to turn into the Happiness Police and deprive people of their right to express themselves, but be good facilitators and help point things towards constructive outcomes and greater understanding.

4. Truth is an Inside Job

If you’re so busy looking at what everyone else is doing wrong, does that mean you’re done working on yourself? Find your truth.

Nancy Marmolejo
Copyright © 2010 – Nancy Marmolejo. Nancy teaches heart based entrepreneurs how to turn their visibility into profitability with social media, and much more. With over 100 media credits to her name, Nancy is an expert at creating loyal followers who turn into pre-sold, ready to buy clients. Learn more about Nancy by visiting her blog http://www.VivaVisibilityBlog.com

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
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NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Don’t Network With People You Don’t Like!

Filed under: Networking Article,Networking Tip — Larry James @ 6:00 am
Tags: , ,

Duh! Seems to me that everyone should know that that is a waste of time. It is inevitable that at some point you will have to spend time with people you don’t like.

The problem with doing your best to work with someone that annoys you is that try as you may, you will NOT be able to change them. You can pretend you like them. That usually shows up in the long run. What else can you do besides being pretentious? You can usually tell when someone is not really being themselves. It is a challenge not worth taking on. Life is to short to waste your time on people you flat do not like. Not everyone is going to be your best friend.

This networking tip is from Daphna Hernandez: “Don’t bother to ‘network’ with people you don’t like. If talking to this person is a chore; if you don’t look forward to calling them, or you can’t wait for your coffee appointment to be over, then you have no business networking with them. Find people you enjoy being with, and develop friendships with them.”

So. . . what do you do? Communicate sincerely. You’ve worked hard to build a reputation for yourself as someone who tries to work things out with others when things seem rough. Hanging out with people you don’t like does not allow you to be true to yourself.

Work on developing the talents and good qualities within yourself so that you can appeal in a new way to other people with whom you will have more in common. Hang around like-minded people. It difficult – if not impossible – to freely express your thoughts with someone that you don’t like.

Could it be that you might be able to warm up relations with a person you dislike merely by smiling, saying hello, and extending a few friendly gestures? Perhaps, however, I’ll bet my bottom dollar that there are plenty other people that you can find that you will like and who will like you if you look for them.

I don’t particularly enjoy being around networkers who are more interested in what they have to say or sell or who are overly aggressive or just plain annoying. When I see someone heading my directions, I go the other way. You can make this change of direction subtle enough by avoiding eye contact, or feigning interest in someone else.

Please don’t misinterpret what I am saying. I believe we should treat others with kindness, compassion and respect even if we don’t like them. Be nice. Never be rude. You can avoid them but don’t ignore them. Stay out of their way. Smile when you feel negative emotions overtaking you in the presence of someone you don’t like. However, nowhere is it written that you have to hang out with them. You can choose to smile and move on.

netHQ

Copyright © 2010 – Larry James. Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. His latest book is, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Visit ” Networking HQ!”

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

Add Larry James to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com

NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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