Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Ten Keys to Business Success

Filed under: Guest Author Articles,Networking Article — Larry James @ 7:00 am
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Brian Tracy, Guest Author

Today, strategies and techniques for achieving success at every level of business, and in every activity of life, are more widely available and proliferating more rapidly than at any other time in human history. And we can all benefit from them by seizing them and applying them to our lives.

There is a system of proven principles, or “laws”, which have been discovered and rediscovered, practiced and implemented, by the most successful businesspeople everywhere, in every kind of organization, large and small, throughout the history of business enterprise. The practice of these laws will give you the winning edge.

When you know and understand these timeless truths, you will gain a tremendous advantage over those who do not. When you organize your life and business according to these universal laws and principles, you can start, build, manage, or turn around a business or department faster and easier than perhaps you ever thought possible.

The more you incorporate these principles into your daily thinking and decision making, the more effective you will become. You will attract and keep better people, produce and sell more and better products and services, control costs more intelligently, expand and grow more predictably, and increase your profits with greater consistency.

Some of these laws may sound unusual or even controversial when you first read them. Nonetheless, they are timeless truths. They have always existed. They have always worked. They are natural laws. They are embedded in the universe. In the long run, they are inviolable.

There are ten critical areas where your ability to think largely determines the success or failure of your business. The greater clarity you have in each of these areas, the better decisions you will make and better results you will achieve.

Key Purpose

What is the purpose of a business? Many people think that the purpose of a business is to earn a profit, but they are wrong. The true purpose of a business is to create and keep a customer. Fully 50 percent of your time, efforts, and expenses should be focused on creating and keeping customers in some way. If a business is successful and it creates and keeps customers in a cost effective way, it will make a profit and will continue to survive and thrive. If for any reason, a business fails to attract a sufficient number of customers, it will experience losses.

Key Measure

The key measure of business success is customer satisfaction. Your ability to satisfy your customers to such a degree that they buy from you rather than from someone else, that they buy again, and that they bring their friends is the key determinant of growth and profitability.

Your job is to create and keep customers. It is to prospect, present and follow-up. It is to look at each customer and think about the sale after next. It is to plan and organize all of your activities so that you not only acquire customers but that you do everything that you possibly can to satisfy those customers better than anyone else could. Your job is to position yourself in the customers mind so that the customer views you as the very best person to help him with the things you sell. Your job is then to continually upgrade the quality of your services so that once you have won that customer, you have that customer for life. When you do this, your future in selling and your future in business is assured.

Key Requirement

The key requirement for wealth building and business success is for you to add value in some way. All wealth comes from adding value. All business growth and profitability come from adding value. Every day, you must be looking for ways to add more and more value to the customer experience.

focusKey Focus

The most important person in the business is the customer. You must focus on the customer at all times. Customers are fickle, disloyal, changeable, impatient, and demanding—just like you. Nonetheless, the customer must be the central focus of everything you do in business.

The position that you hold in the customer’s mind determines all of his reactions and interactions with you. Your position determines whether or not your customer buys, whether he buys again and whether he refers others to you. Everything that you do with regard to your customer affects the way your customer thinks about you.

Key Word

In life, work, and business, you will always be rewarded in direct proportion to the value of your contribution to others, as they see it. The focus on outward contribution, to your company, your customers, and your community, is the central requirement for you to become an ever more valuable person, in every area.

Key Question

The most important question you ask, to solve any problem, overcome any obstacle, or achieve any business goal is “How?” Top people always ask the question “How?” and then act on the answers that come to them.

Key Strategy

In a world of rapid change and continuing aggressive competition, you must practice continuous improvement in every area of your business and personal life. As Pat Riley, the basketball coach, said, “If you’re not getting better, you’re getting worse.”

Key Activity

The heartbeat of your business is sales. Dun & Bradstreet analyzed thousands of companies that had gone broke over the years and concluded that the number-one reason for business failure was “low sales.” When they researched further, they found that the number-one reason for business success was “high sales.” And all else was commentary.

Key Number

The most important number in business is cash flow. Cash flow is to the business as blood and oxygen are to the brain. You can have every activity working efficiently in your business, but if your cash flow is cut off for any reason, the business can die, sometimes overnight.

Key Goal

Every business must have a growth plan. Growth must be the goal of all your business activities. You should have a goal to grow 10 percent, 20 percent, or even 30 percent each year. Some companies grow 50 percent and 100 percent per year, and not by accident. The only real growth is profit growth. Profit growth is always measurable in what is called “free cash flow.” This is the actual amount of money that the business throws off each month, each quarter, and each year, above and beyond the total cost and expense of running a business.

Action Exercise

You should have a growth plan for the number of new leads you attract and for the number of new customers you acquire from those leads. You should have a growth plan for sales, revenues, and profitability. If you do not deliberately plan for continuous growth, you will automatically stagnate and begin to fall behind. Growth is not an accident; so you must plan and map out your growth plan if you want your business to see a bright future.

Now, here are two things you can do immediately to start moving toward business success:

First, set a goal, make a plan and then launch your plan. Get started. Do something. Begin on a small scale with limited risk and investment but get going!

Second, resolve that, no matter what happens, you will never, never give up until you are successful. Before you accomplish anything worthwhile, you will have to pass the persistence test. And the test will come far sooner than you imagine.

Read, “Networking: A Crash Course in Personal Development.”
Read, “Networking Events are a Waste of Time. . .

Brian Tracy photoCopyright © 2010 – Brian Tracy – Reprinted with permission. Brian Tracy is the most listened to audio author on personal and business success in the world today. His fast-moving talks and seminars on leadership, sales, managerial effectiveness and business strategy are loaded with powerful, proven ideas and strategies that people can immediately apply to get better results in every area. For more information, please go to: www.BrianTracy.com or check out, “Speak on Your Feet“.

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! Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “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.

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Friday, August 27, 2010

The Art of Savvy Networking

Filed under: Guest Author Articles,Networking Tip — Larry James @ 7:00 am
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Susan RoAne, Guest Author

sroaneBehind every great man or woman is a great… network. In fact the most powerful people aren’t necessarily those with the largest bank accounts, but those with the biggest contact list or database; the “Rolodex” of today. Their networks are expansive and diverse, and because of those linkages, they’re able to pick up the phone and make things happen.

Eight Traits of a Savvy Networker

How can you build a power-network? First, start thinking of networking not as a WORK style, but as a LIFE style that can enhance your personal and professional life. Then develop the networking skills of the masters. To be a savvy networker:

• Look people in the eye and make them feel comfortable from the very first meeting.
• Ask questions and listen intently, rather than scanning the room for someone more important to talk to or checking a Blackberry for incoming messages.
• Stay in touch with people − especially when you need nothing from them.
• Be loyal and look out for your friends.
• Be easy to work with.
• Have an enjoyable presence and be at ease with both men and women
• Exude confidence.
• Offer to help before asked and do so when asked
Embrace all people, not just the right people.

Know Who You Know

Everybody has a network. The important thing is to know who you know. Keep a database of your contacts and connections. Start with your Holiday card list, and work back from there. Think about all the jobs you’ve held and the different colleagues, competitors and vendors you’ve worked with. Think of the professional organizations and church or synagogue you belong to. Then recall the neighborhoods you’ve lived in, the people you went to school with and the clubs and organizations you to which you belonged.

As you go through this process, list the names of people you remember – and who will remember you. Don’t forget those who are on the periphery of your life, yet are a great source: your dry cleaner, local baker, barber/hairstylist, mechanic, children’s teachers, etc.

Treat People as People not as Contacts

Establish relationships with the contacts you’ve made. Networking is a reciprocal process and should be done in the spirit of sharing that transcends the information shared. The best networkers reflect that spirit with a genuine joy in their “giving.” In fact, they don’t even know they’re networking: they just refer, match, recommend and bring people together.

Know How to Ask for Help

Having a network won’t get you the results you’re looking for if you’re afraid to ask for help. Whether it’s for your job search, a specific project or a recommendation, most people are happy to help when asked. But how you ask is important. The best of networkers ask in a way that allows people to say yes − and gives them room to say no.

Savvy networkers are aware of their impact on others and behave accordingly. Keep tabs on your “favor bank;” know whom you owe – and who owes you. Remember, most people who owe you favors actually want to be able to clear the slate! The behavior we must master is a tenet of networking: to Ask for help and to Offer your help. If we don’t, we will miss out on opportunities.

The late Sally Livingston, a pioneer networking advocate said it best: “Networking is not using others; it’s a process of utilizing sources and resources and being one for others.

roane

Copyright 2010 – Susan RoAne – Reprinted with permission. Susan RoAne is a speaker and author who has worked trade shows, conventions, planes, and the bleachers at Wrigley Field, and taught others to do the same. Her latest book, How to Create Your Own Luck: The You Never Know Approach to Networking, Taking Chances, and Opening Yourself to Opportunity, is out and her other books include How to Work a Room and The Secrets of Savvy Networking. To learn more call 415-239-2224. For further information: www.SusanRoAne.com, or e-mail @: Susan@SusanRoAne.com

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! Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “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.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
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Monday, August 23, 2010

Networking Groups as Tribes!

Filed under: Networking,Networking Article — Larry James @ 7:00 am

We as people crave community. so why is it that when we’re feeling absolutely lost we regress and separate ourselves from everyone and; everything? That’s definitely a step in the wrong direction.

A networking group is a tribe; a group of people connected to each other. A tribe is basically a village of customers, friends, competitors, clients, etc. On average 70% of all new business is gained through word of mouth and positive recommendation. You need to belong to a tribe!

People in tribes help each other. Have you ever thought about how good it feels when you have helped someone whether it is by saving them time and effort by providing them with a useful contact, passing someone a referral or directly giving someone a piece of useful advice? That is just one of the benefits of business networking.

“It’s a fact of life: birds flock, fish school, people tribe.” – Dave Logan

It may be tough at first. You may go from person to person to person looking for someone to click with. Never give up. it WILL happen and it will feel amazing when you find those two or three people who you can truly count on. They will be someone you can call them when you’re feeling low, they will always listen. Call them when you have great news, they’ll smile with you. We need to be together, we need to be here for each other.

tribesThose who are interested in marketing and leadership should check out “Tribes”. If you have a career in marketing you should definitely check it out – given the status of Seth Godin in this field. There is good advice here for both marketing and leadership, and is worth a look – I will likely continue reading his other books now that I have completed “Tribes”.

Every tribe has a language or jargon. Whether it’s rabid fans of a sports team, residents of a neighborhood, members of a social class, a networking group, or just people who share an interesting obsession, every tribe has a language. When you’re trying to persuade a particular member of the tribe, you’ve got to find the language that they use every day. IF you do not know the difference between a sales lead and a referral, you send a signal that you’re not one of them. Listen.

“We are attracted to people who are like ourselves or those we tend to “like. Birds of a feather flock together. It’s familiar, predictable and requires little effort. To grow… you must go beyond YOU and those similar to you. Desires not yet fulfilled may require cooperation with those not yet known. Be open… and they will appear.” ~ Dr. Jake Caputo

Develop the habit of writing down scraps of conversation that you hear. Keep file folders of customer comments, and go through it looking for interesting turns of phrase. Don’t “clean up” client testimonials too much – leave the linguistic quirks and oddities.

Listen more than you talk, and read more than you write if you’re building a tribe.

You don’t just have to stick with the tribes that exist already. Creating your own is one of the most effective (and fun) ways to build a business or project.

You don’t have to force this “secret language.” Just keep your ears open for the ideas and metaphors your villagers respond to. When you come up with a good turn of phrase, keep using it. Repetition is your friend. How about you? What’s the secret language of your tribe?

You may not think it’s a tribe or call it something else like a group, association or a league or a class or demographic, but we all belong to a tribe in one way or another.

There is no tribe of normal. People don’t coalesce into active and committed tribes around the status quo. The only vibrant tribes in our communities are the ones closer the edges, or those trying to make change. The center is large, but it’s not connected. If you’re trying to build a tribe, a community or a movement, and you want it to be safe and beyond reproach at the same time, you will fail. Heretical thoughts, delivered in a way that capture the attention of the minority – that’s the path that works. ~ Seth Godin

NOTE: A special “thank you” to Seth Godin for his contribution to this article.

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! Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “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.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
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Thursday, August 19, 2010

Is Your Networking Not-Working for You?

Filed under: Networking,Networking Article — Larry James @ 7:00 am

Networking is most useful when employed as a lifelong approach to your business, rather than a quick fix for it. Networking may not be the answer to your problem.

Successful networking is not easy for everyone. It’s a critical skill that must be learned one step at a time. In today’s economy, networking is an even more important marketing tool than it has ever been before.

“Business people often turn to networking at different times. Start ups will often network like crazy early on and established businesses will often start when traditional routes to market dry up. The thing they very often have in common is the idea that networking is the answer to their problem. The first and BIG mistake that many people make is they dive headlong into the activity of networking with a complete misunderstanding of what networking really is.” ~ Dave Clark, NRG-Networks.com

Seeing other people purely in terms of what they can do for you is the essence of shallow. It is not about you. You must recognize that networking is not a one-way street. Manipulating others for personal gain is the province of gold diggers and social climbers all over the world. Is that really how you want to be remembered? It will not always be clear how you and your contacts will mutually benefit each other.

Some business people attend group meetings (once) swapping business cards with everyone they can, broadcasting their message, chasing immediate transactions and moving on. They join online networks, put together a profile and broadcast some more. After a while this doesn’t work and many conclude that networking doesn’t work.

There are plenty of networking groups out there with experienced business people that will help you avoid the most common mistakes and make sure networking does work for you and your business.

Like anything worthwhile, networking takes time and application. You need to be committed to investing the time to develop relationships and create a network of advocates. You may not want to admit it, but you are probably getting lazy: showing up late, sitting and talking solely with friends, and not strategically making new contacts or setting meetings with potential clients and customers. However, using too much of your time in networking could take valuable time away from your business. Balance is the key.

In developing your network, it is vital to reach out to a wide variety of people. It is not always imperative to have a common interest. Many people limit their contacts to people working in the same field. That could be a mistake. They think that those outside the circle might not be able to offer any help anyway. Wrong! It is better to establish a network with people from different fields, different socio-economic background and even different countries. You never can tell what ideas you can exchange with people who are not familiar with your business but whose ideas you might adapt to your own business.

When asked “what do you do?” present your proposition confidently & consistently – your target market, the problems you solve and your stories. People do not buy what you do, they buy into why you do it. It’s your passion and enthusiasm that engages and not a clever 30-second connection.

exchangiebuscard2Take the time to get to know the members and the ways you can help – support, information and introductions. Become an active listener and see how you can help the people you meet. Pay attention to what people are telling you or are talking about, and search for problems that you can help solve.

The purpose of networking is to spend time with other people, to get to know them, and to find out some information that can be followed up later on. Save the sales pitch for another time.

Just exchanging business cards is never enough.

Read: “What About Business Cards!”

Become an advocate for others first. Help others in whatever way you can with a valuable contact, a key networking event, or a worthwhile association. Often information we take for granted can be valuable to someone else.

Always pay it forward. In every encounter you have with another person at a networking event, always give more than you take!

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! Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “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.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” 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
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Sunday, August 15, 2010

Networking: Putting the Puzzle Pieces Together!

What are the pieces of the Networking puzzle? Perhaps it time to get the puzzle box out and look at what a successful networking plan might look like.

There is a tendency for networkers – those who are established as well as those who are just getting started – to start trying to put together the networking puzzle without first taking the time to determine what the final picture should look like, making sure they have all the pieces, and sorting out pieces that may belong to another puzzle. There are many pieces to these puzzles, but they all fit together perfectly. If one piece is missing, the picture can never be completed as intended.

collaboration1Networking not working for you? Are you puzzled about networking? Maybe you don’t have all pieces of the networking puzzle. Here is my noble attempt at piecing it all together. Perhaps today you will find the missing piece.

1. Have a good attitude. If you don’t believe that networking will work for you, you get to be right.

2. Choosing the right group for you. You’ll only want to invest your time and energy into a group that is active in your community as well as with each other. Don’t waste time with groups that will not provide the type of connections your business needs. Professional associations are also well aware – and supportive – of the need for their members and potential members to network.

3. Direction. Get some networking training. Read about how others who are successful at networking do it. Connect with someone who has “been there and done it.” Request mentoring.

4. Be fully present. Pay attention. Your purpose is to develop and nurture mutually beneficial relationships with colleagues and potential business associates. It is important to read, to watch, to talk with others and, especially, to listen.

5. Commitment. Commitment by its very nature implies some action to be taken to achieve a desire, a dream or a goal.

6. Be active. Active involvement, i.e., joining committees, writing articles for newsletters, etc., will enable you to get positive exposure – and enhance your positioning, as well as open up greater opportunities to meet new colleagues.

7. Networking is about giving!

8. Be Patient. Long-term business relationships are not built on the first meeting.

9. Be Memorable.

10. Be Visible. Show up at Networking events. Work the room.

just like the jigsaw puzzle, it takes some time to get everything in the right place. Sometimes you do not seem to be making much progress and you walk away frustrated and some quit. Never quit! Networking is much too important to your business to quit.

Gradually little bits and pieces that seemed to make no sense at first suddenly become an important part of the whole picture. Ah! The sweet smell of success!

When you ask good questions, you will gain insights into how you can become a valuable resource in solving the networking puzzle and becoming an active promoter for those in your network.

When combined, all these pieces of the puzzle form the perfect picture for creating long term residual income. Hopefully this will help all the pieces of the networking puzzle to fall into place.

Puzzle complete!

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! Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “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.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” 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
Follow Larry’s “Authors & Speakers” BLOG at: http://www.AuthorsandSpeakerNetwork.wordpress.com/

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

What Do I Say, After I Say, “Hello?”

Filed under: Guest Author Articles,Networking Article — Larry James @ 7:00 am
Tags:

Robyn Henderson, Guest Author

There are lots of people out there who have an absolute terror of talking to strangers. This fear however, is generally totally unfounded.

Some arrive at a networking function feeling a little nervous, because they don’t know many of the people attending. This often causes them to leave their personality at the venue doorstep. They are unable to start or finish conversations and usually have a miserable time. They leave, vowing never to return and to avoid future networking events at all costs.

Comfort Zones

However, back in their comfort zone, they can express opinions on just about anything and rarely allow themselves to feel intimidated by anything or anyone.

comfortzone“A comfort zone denotes that limited set of behaviours that a person will engage without becoming anxious. Alternatively denoted as a “plateau” it describes that set of behaviours that have become comfortable, without creating a sense of risk. A person’s personality can be described by his or her comfort zones. Highly successful persons may routinely step outside their comfort zones, to accomplish what they wish.

A comfort zone is a type of mental conditioning that causes a person to create and operate mental boundaries that are not real. Such boundaries create an unfounded sense of security. Like inertia, a person who has established a comfort zone in a particular axis of his or her life, will tend to stay within that zone without stepping outside of it. To step outside a person’s comfort zone, he must experiment with new and different behaviors, and then experience the new and different responses that then occur within his environment.” ~ Chrissie Cool

So, we may surmise that it is actually our nerves and fear of meeting strangers that sometimes gets the better of us at these events. Therefore, to improve your networking skills, it will help dramatically if you work on improving your conversation skills.

Think about some of the better communicators in your networks – what makes them different? Is it that they do any or all of the following:

• Listen to your answer
• Allow you to finish your response without interrupting
• Make eye contact
• Genuinely act as if they do care about your answer
• Somehow make you feel special
• Follow up when they say they will
• Offer helpful suggestions
• Remember snippets of previous conversations you may have had

The one thing each of these great communicators do, is make a heart to heart connection with you.

This is not in a romantic sense. Rather the listener focuses on you and the conversation you are having together. Whether there are one or five people in the group, they are focussed on the general conversation. They are not distracted. They are “in the moment” or “in the now”.

When we speak from our heads, we often become flustered and nervous, stumbling over words. We are so worried about what we are going to say next or what a word means or whether we are wearing the right clothes, etc., etc. With all this head stuff happening, anyone having a conversation with us, just thinks we are uninterested in their answers and distracted.

When we make that heart to heart connection, we listen actively to the conversation. We don’t have to worry about what we are going to say next, because when we are listening, we receive lots of cues for responses or more questions. If we are quiet long enough, we can even learn lots of things.

Think for a moment of the last time you had a conversation with someone over the phone and you knew, possibly by the background noise or by their distracted manner, that they were not listening to you. Their mind was elsewhere – they were definitely not in the “now”.

Then, think about a phone conversation with someone who was in the now and listened actively and with a focus. More often than not, the conver-sation was quality not quantity. You both kept to the point, said what you had to say, and agreed on an outcome.

Conversations at networking events are no different to phone conversations, we want to feel that the person we are speaking to is in fact listening.

Effective networkers have a belief system that every single person they meet is incredibly interesting and has much to contribute to any conversation.

Key to Making Connection

When you focus on that heart to heart connection, once the conversation starts, it generally flows. The key to making the connection is basically you are treating people the way you would like to be treated yourself.

If you knew everyone in the room and a stranger walked into the room, what would they be hoping someone in the room would do? Befriend them of course, just as they would do if positions were reversed.

So, the next time you see a person standing alone and looking a little nervous or out of place, talk to them. Say, “Hi, my name is _____, mind if I join you?” Or, even better, catch their eye and invite them to join your group.

robynhendersonIf by chance you befriend someone who does not want to join in your conversation, that’s okay. At least you extended the hand of friendship to them.

Good networkers usually have a couple of open ended questions prepared. Here are a few examples:

• What was the highlight of your weekend/day/holiday?
• What tips would you give someone, who has never attended one of these events?
• I may already know someone who could do business with you, what would your ideal client look like?
• What’s your opinion on _____?
• What’s your favorite _____? restaurant, movie, sport, etc.
• Your _____ looks great, where did you buy your _____ (jacket, tie, etc.)?
• What do you like most about your_____ (job, home, living in _____)?

netHQ

Copyright © 2010 – Robyn Henderson. Robyn Henderson is regarded as a Global Networking Specialist. She has authored and contributed to over 25 books (including 10 on networking and business building and 3 on self-esteem and confidence building). Robyn was presented with the 1997 Speaker award from the National Speakers Association of Australia in November 1997 for her contribution to the speaking industry and is a CSP – Certified Speaking Professional with NSAA. This accreditation is shared by only 17 women in Australia and 110 women globally. Visit Robyn’s Website at: http://www.NetworkingToWin.com.au/ and Networking BLOG.

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! Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “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.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” 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

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Are You Really •HOT• About What You Do?

Filed under: Guest Author Articles,Networking Article — Larry James @ 7:00 am
Tags:

Natalie Bradley, Guest Author

One major aspect of business that most people or coaches seem to just glaze over is the whole piece about really loving what you do. You’ve got to not only like what you do, but really fall in love with what you do and be passionate about it!

So many of us (me included) go into the world basing our decisions on what we want to do or be in life based on how much money we want to make. Or, we go into it thinking that looks too hard … I’ll just pick something a bit easier. Well if you’re only in business to make a buck, I have news for you: you’re never going to see that paycheck or that wad of cash you’re longing for.

The funny thing is that when you truly fall in love with what you do, when you really get turned on about how you can help others, or impact someone else’s life in a positive way, things start to shift and fall in place for you. When you have a *burning desire,* as Napolean Hill points out in the book Think and Grow Rich, that’s where the magic happens.

NatalieBradleyWhat really makes you tick? What makes your soul shine bright? What do you long to do in your heart?

Maybe it’s the same industry or business that you’re in now, but you just need to approach it in a completely different way. Or, possibly, you’re in the right industry, but you’re not quite tapped in to where or what you truly want to be.

It’s also quite hard to realize the desire in your heart when you’re so stressed out, worked up, and stretched to the limits in areas of your life that drain your creative energy. You see, people like me and you need to be able to focus on our brilliance. We need to have time to focus on what makes us extraordinary and what makes that fire within burn brighter than we ever imagined?

What would that look like for you in your life?

Imagine what it would mean for you to wake up with so much joy, light and love in your heart that you were about to explode. What would it feel like to know that you can totally change someone’s wedding day with your beautiful talents? What would that feel like? I think that it feels like heaven to be quite honest.

netHQ

Copyright © 2010 – Natalie Bradley. Natalie Bradley, The Bride Attraction Mentor, is creator of the Bride Attraction System, the proven step-by-step program that shows you exactly how to attract more brides, make more m.o.n.e.y., and have more freedom in your business…guaranteed. To get your F.R.E.E. audio course: “5 Ways to Recession-Proof Your Wedding Business” and receive her weekly marketing & motivation articles on attracting more high-paying, ideal brides and drastically increasing your income, visit www.BrideAttraction.com.

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! Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “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.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” 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

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

How to Cultivate A Network of Endless Referrals

Filed under: Guest Author Articles,Networking Article — Larry James @ 7:00 am
Tags:

Bob Burg, Guest Author

No question about it; you provide one of the most valuable services imaginable. However, without an ongoing and ever increasing number of new, quality prospects, you’ll eventually run out of people with whom to share the benefits.

You might even end up asking yourself that most dreaded of questions in the world of sales, which is, “Who do I talk to next, now that my original list of names has run out?” That thought can be downright discouraging, can’t it? Then again, it need not happen.

Develop profitable, win/win relationships with practically every new person you meet – whether one on one or in a social setting.

How? Ask questions. Specifically, “feel-good” questions. These are questions designed to put your conversation partner at ease, and begin the rapport-building process. These are not intrusive, invasive, or in anyway resembling those of the stereotypical salesperson. Feel-good questions are simply questions that make your new prospect/potential referral-source feel good; about themselves, about the conversation, and about you. Vital, because “all things being equal, people will do business with, and refer business to, those people they know, like and trust.” Asking feel-good questions is the first step to accomplishing that goal.

So what are some of these “Feel-good” type questions?

1. “How did you get started in the ‘widget’ business?” I call this the “Movie-of-the-Week” question because most people love the opportunity to “tell their story” to someone. This, in a world where most people don’t care enough to want to know their story.

2. “What do you enjoy most about what you do?” Again, you are giving them something very positive to associate with you and your conversation. You are making them feel special, important.

welovereferrals2You’ve begun to establish a nice rapport with your new prospect. You are focusing on him or her, as opposed to you and your awesome product, as most salespeople do. He or she is starting to feel good about you and has enjoyed answering your first two “Feel-good” questions. Now it’s time for the “One key question,” and here it is:

“Pat, how can I know if someone I am speaking with would be a good prospect for you?”

Here, you’ve continued to establish yourself as being different from all others they meet who are in business, who only seem to want to know, “How can you help me.” Also, since you are asking for help in identifying their prospects, she will gladly supply you with an answer. And the fact is, nothing builds trust and credibility with a prospect than actually referring business to them whenever possible.

Your conversation has ended and you never even mentioned your products or services. Good, since your relationship with this new prospect may not be far enough along for him or her to be receptive to this. (At other times it’s very advisable to bring up.) That’s fine. Hopefully, you’ve gotten your prospect’s business card. Now you are in the position to follow up correctly and systematically in order to nurture this new relationship.

Whenever meeting new people, the above questions will help you to very quickly build your prospect list with high-quality people. And, in a manner that is fun and without stress. You’ll never again feel the “discomfort” in the pit of your stomach, knowing that you have to nervously and clumsily approach someone you don’t want to approach, and whom you can just sense, does not want to be approached.

Know this: the typical person knows about 250 people. Thus, every time you meet one new person, and develop a relationship based on the fact that he or she now feels as though they “know you, like you and trust you” you’ve actually just increased your personal prospect list a potential 250 people, every single time. Do this often enough and before long, you’ll cultivate a network of endless referrals.

bobburg

Copyright © 2010 – Bob Burg. Bob Burg is author of “Endless Referrals: Network Your Everyday Contacts Into Sales” and “Winning Without Intimidation: How to Master the Art of Positive Persuasion,” both with over 100,000 copies sold. His newest booklet is “The Successs Formula.” He also publishes a free weekly eZINE newsletter. Visit Bob’s BLOG.

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! Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “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
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

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