Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James

Friday, July 29, 2011

Networking Your Way to the Top

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

Annemarie Cross, Guest Author

Are you a savvy business owner? Are you actively networking your way to the top of your game?

Or, do you realize that this is something you should be doing, however life and ‘being too busy’ just gets in the way. Therefore, you don’t start networking until your project list starts to decline and you need to get some more business on your books.

$$upNetworking (both online and offline) is something every business owner should be doing, as not only will building your network enable you to make some great friendships and collegial relationships, it can also open the doors to many opportunities.

These opportunities include invitations to participate as a guest speaker in a webinar/teleseminar series; national/global conferences; telesummits; radio/podcast interviews; Tweet Chats; as well as contributing articles as guest author for various magazines and blogs.

Would you like to receive opportunities like these to build your profile as an authority in your field?

You can! By building and nurturing your network.

So, if you know that networking is something you should be doing more of, my coach’s request for you this week is to make a commitment to be more proactive in your networking efforts.

Here are three things you should be aware of when it comes to building a solid network and networking your way to the top:

1. Think: ‘Quality’ Vs ‘Quantity’

Don’t get sucked in by the numbers.

While it’s nice to think you’ve got lots of followers and people in your network, instead think about building quality relationships with people who have similar interests as you and in the work you are doing. Don’t try to boost the number of people you are associated with by connecting with anyone and everyone.

As a business owner the people who you should be looking to build quality relationships with are potential customers, suppliers/vendor, joint venture opportunities and other key stakeholders. These people are far more likely going to be interested in what you have to say and have information that will be of interest to you – therefore the relationship is one that has mutual benefits.

So, think quality relationships, not the quantity of people you are connected with.

2. Think: ‘Connection’ NOT ‘Promotion’

Want to know one of the ways you can tarnish your relationship with someone you’ve just met? Send them information about your products and/or services “just in case they are interested”.

Don’t be a spammer.

Networking is about building relationships – it’s about nurturing and strengthening your connections with people. It’s not about promoting your products and services.

People are more likely to invest, recommend or joint venture with someone they know, like and trust. Therefore focus on building these things with people in your network. You never know where this could lead.

3. Think: ‘Giving’ NOT ‘Taking’

supportNurturing the relationships with the people in your network by sharing relevant information and showing a genuine interest in what they are doing is important.

Don’t be the person whose one goal is to get as much information from their network without giving anything back.

Not sure how you can give to your network? Here are a few suggestions:

• Reconnect with someone you haven’t communicated with in a while and ask them how they are and what they are working on.
• Found an article that would be of interest to one of your contacts? Send them a link to the article so they can add this to their resources.
• Heard about a success of one of your connections? Congratulate them for the great work they are doing.
• Has one of your contacts written an article? There are numerous ways you can strengthen your relationship with this person:

a. Share their article with your community on Facebook, Twitter and/or Linkedin.
b. Write a thoughtful comment beneath their article if they have also published this on their blog.
c. Add a trackback to their article in one of your articles.

• Retweet or reply to one of their comments on Twitter.
• Like, Share and/or comment on their Facebook post.
• Add a comment or contribute a response if your contact has shared a post on Linkedin.
• Answer a question and contribute some resources on Linkedin Answers.
• Thank someone who has just retweeted and shared one of your articles or comments.
• Respond and thank people who have left a comment on your blog.

Remember, building a solid network is something you should be doing as part of your daily business building efforts – even if you commit to just spending 15 minutes a day to put into action some of the above suggestions.

ACrossnetHQ

Copyright © 2011 – Annemarie Cross. Annemarie Cross is a Personal Branding Strategist, Social Media Strategist & Business Coach supporting women entrepreneurs tap into their unique and authentic brilliance (their brand) so they can create a buzz, gain expert status, and finally attract a constant stream of ideal and high paying clients in their business. Visit Annemarie’s Website!

Larry James presents networking seminars nationally and offers Networking coaching; one-on-one or for your Networking Group! Invite Larry James to speak to your group! 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, July 25, 2011

Mind Your Networking Manners

Here are a few things to keep in mind when you attend networking events! Good manners engenders goodwill and trust from others, and makes it more likely that others will want to work with you.

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Don’t talk with your mouth full! 😉

Don’t chow down at the food station. Never talk with your mouth full. No one likes to talk with someone who is more interested in chomping away at the hor dourves. Did you come to eat or network. I usually eat before I arrive so I can spend more time networking.

Never stand on the sidelines. Get into the game.

Wear your name tag on your upper right shoulder, which is the natural place for people to look when they shake your hand. Never wear it hanging from your neck or upside down or with someone else’s name.

Never give your business cards out randomly. Be selective. Only give your card to someone with whom you have an interest in following up with.

It is not politically correct to arrive late. Always be on time. Show up early and stay late.

Don’t butt in when others are talking. Interrupting tells them you were not really listening or not interested. And don’t be a time hog. In other words, pay attention to what they are saying (you might learn something) and don’t be so quick to talk only about YOU. If you want others to pay attention to you, pay attention to them. Be patient. Conversation is a two-way street. Try not to be so set on your talking points that you miss what the other person has to offer. Listen more than you speak.

Dress to impress. Your image is what people see first. Present the “best” image of yourself. Business casual is the uniform of the day – depending on the event! Sloppy dressers won’t get referrals from me. Cut-offs and sandals are out.

Demonstrate your own self-confidence. Maintain a positive attitude about yourself and your accomplishments. Talking about yourself positively is not the same as bragging. Confidence attracts people.

Never text, Tweet, send e-mail or make phone calls during events or networking meetings. Be respectful of others. Turn your cell phone off or at least set it to vibrate. Place all your focus on the reason you chose to attend in the first place. If you must take a priority call, be sure to excuse yourself before you answer and step away from the area or – better yet – go outside where you won’t disturb others.

thinkbeforeSpeakingIntroduce yourself but be careful not to bore people with a 30-second connection when informally meeting someone. Your so-called “elevator speech” or 30-second connection is usually intended for smaller group meetings where everyone is given an opportunity to introduce themselves. Develop a one-liner that tells them your name and clearly tells what you do and do it before you ever get to the event.

When you stumble on someone who you think you might like to follow-up with or include into your own personal network, show an interest in them. When receiving a business card, take the time to look it over and make a comment about it. Make notes on the back of their business card so you can remember something about them when you follow up. Allow them to see you do this. It demonstrates that they have aroused an interest in them.

Always remember, networking is all about building relationships. Relationships are built on trust. Building trust is generally not built in a single meeting. The trust part will develop when you are authentic in your relationships.

Keep your word! It you say you will follow-up, do it. If you say you will call, call.

The person standing right in front of you should always take priority. While at a networking event, never be caught looking over the shoulder of the person you are talking to for someone better to talk with. If they are a bore, give them the courtesy of a polite exit and then move on (e.g., “I need to refresh my drink, perhaps we will run into each other again later.”) Always exit conversations politely.

On the other hand, if they start to fidget, look around the room or use noncommittal words like “okay,” “interesting,” and “hmmm,” they are probably finished talking to you. Bring the conversation to a quick conclusion and move on. Another exit strategy is to excuse yourself shortly after someone else joins the conversation. I once saw a friend and decided to stop and say hello. He quickly introduced me to the person he was talking to and left. After spending a few minutes with the one he introduced me to, I realized why he left. It wasn’t long before I moved on. 😉

Be friendly, share a smile and make good eye contact. Intense eye contact can make you appear confrontational or confused. Too little contact can make you appear rude and disinterested. Be memorable, not just another face in the crowd. I often will say, “My name is Larry James, the guy with two first names” to help them remember me.

“When you call, leave a message. They know you called. Almost everyone has some sort of caller ID which will show that you did call. If you don’t leave a message, they won’t know if it’s an emergency or not. I mean they’ll probably know it’s not an emergency, but just do them a favor and tell them so.

Second. Leave your number. Twice. Leave it once at the beginning of the message and then once more at the end. At the very least, leave it at the beginning. That way, when they try to write it down, they don’t have to wait through the entire message a second time to make sure that they got it right.” ~ Greg Peters, The Reluctant Networker

Nobody likes a phoney! You can spot them across the room. Keep it real. There is nothing worse that being a fake for the sake of gaining contacts. Be yourself.

If you are holding a cold drink, hold it in your left hand. Icy fingers don’t work well when you shake hands.

Be a giver. . . not a taker. Never make a sales pitch at a networking event. Offer assistance to those you meet. If you know someone that they should know and you feel comfortable enough with them to namedrop. . . do it! An easy way to touch base with someone in your network is to clip out an article that you think might interest them and mail it to them – not e-mail – use a stamp!

When you receive a lead from someone, send them a hand-written thank-you note – not e-mail – use a stamp! Include your business card.

I often will ask someone I meet for networking advice. It does two things: I find out how much they know about networking and I might learn something. It’s also a good conversation starter. Ask: “Been networking long?” “What works best for you?” “What is the best technique you’ve discovered while networking?”

Make it a goal to do something for the people you meet. Doing something for someone without expecting anything in return is a very quick way to allow people to warm up to you.

Don’t substitute technology for face-to-face conversation. Small talk breaks the ice and puts others at ease. An occasional e-mail is okay, however, be sure to send e-mail without abbreviations and grammatical errors. It’s tacky and unprofessional. Spell-check email and re-read email before pushing the “send” button. Phone calls are better, and face-to-face meetings are best.

I know, it goes without saying, but I’m going to say it anyway. Always remember to say please and thank you.

There are many other dos and don’ts for networking. You are encouraged to comment on some of the ones you have found to be effective.

BONUS Articles: When You Shake Hands. . . Really Shake Hands!
Breaking the Ice at Networking Events
Business Etiquette: 5 Rules That Matter Now

netHQCopyright © 2011 – Larry James. Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. Larry James presents networking seminars nationally and offers Networking coaching; one-on-one or for your Networking Group! Invite Larry James to speak to your group! 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!”

commentSubscribe 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/

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Networking Mentors – Be One and Find One

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

If more networkers had a mentor, and some really great training then their chances of truly reaching their dreams in life would be so much closer. A mentor can have a major impact on your life and your career. Only a mentor can truly share wisdom with you on an ongoing basis. You get expert business networking skills at your fingertips.

The Merriam-Webster WWWebster Dictionary defines a mentor as “a trusted counselor or guide.” A mentor is someone with more business networking experience than you have and who serves as a trusted confidante over an extended period of time. Mentoring is about contribution. A true mentor is a veteran in the wings who you take to lunch or visit occasionally and who offers kernels of wisdom just because they have the experience you desire. Usually they do not charge a fee. Why? If they are like me, it is a way of giving back to the community. This may sound altruistic and it is. It is an unselfish concern for the welfare of others or in other words: selflessness.

mentoring makes a differenceAsk anyone successful in any line of work how they did it, and there’s at least one thing they’ll all agree on: You’ll never make it without the guidance of special people who’ve walked your path before. They have been there and done that.

There is a saying that the teacher teaches most what the teacher needs to learn. Some do it to develop their skills as a teacher, manager, strategist, or consultant. A true mentoring relationship works both ways – the mentor learns about new ideas from mentee as the mentee learns about business networking from them. You choose them and they choose you.

A mentor will become not only your advisor, but your friend and confidante. However, a mentor relationship is a trusted relationship that develops over time. It cannot possibly come from someone you just met at a networking event. Relationships – especially trusted relationships – are very special. Your mentor has no ulterior motive – no service or product to sell you. That combined with their experience creates a great foundation for trust.

“If you want to improve your networking skills, teach someone else what you know.” ~ Dr. Ivan Misner, Founder and Chairman of BNI, the world’s largest business networking organization

If you are looking for a mentor, here are a few things to remember:

1. Clearly define the area of your business where you need the most help. Make a list of your top goals for the mentoring relationship. A mentor is there to help you set goals and hold you accountable.
Mentors2. Be selective about who you approach to be your mentor. Research available information about them.
3. Ask them about their career.
4. Pick their brain at lunches – Pay for lunches and coffees.
5. Find out who they learned from.
6. Ask what was the one piece of advice that they received that made the biggest difference in their business.
7. Discuss the length of time your mentor will be available. Frequency of contact is important in the relationship to keep the learning process moving forward.
8. Take notes. Bring a recording device of your choice: pen and paper, PDA, laptop, or voice recorder.
9. Really listen to what they say. Pay attention. Be coachable.
10. Be honest about your strengths, weaknesses, and skill level.

Not knowing how to create their own success is frustration. Admitting you don’t know everything you need to know about your business is a strength.

SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives) provide entrepreneurs with free mentoring and workshops at hundreds of local offices nationwide. SCORE also offers e-mail mentoring and an online database of their mentors.

Solicit former bosses or professors, people you meet through professional associations or networking groups, or even online social networks. Some are more than willing to be a mentor. It’s not a life-long commitment. All you have to do is ask. You will usually have only one mentor at a time, but over time, you may have several mentors in several different areas of your business.

“Coaching and mentoring are often better online or over the phone because it’s less about who’s giving the advice and more about the topics at hand.” ~ Nell Merlino, president of Count Me In, a New York-based women’s business advocacy group.

Always remember that while a mentoring relationship generally lasts more than just one or two meetings, neither of you is locked in. You continue the relationship only if it continues to serve you both well. The job of a mentor is not to take you by the hand every step of the way. It’s to give you some guidance while you are on your way.

Your guidance will be influential in helping that person succeed and grow, just as you have. Think back to any Mentor or person of significant influence in your life and how grateful you are to that person for helping to steer you the right way. Now is your chance to guide someone else’s path.

“No one gets to the top of the mountain alone. Why would we want to when the view is so much better when surrounded by friends?” ~ Kristen Marie Schuerlein

BONUS Article: Become a Networking Mentor
The Networking Collaborative
5 Tips to help You Choose the Best Mentor

netHQCopyright © 2011 – Larry James. Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. Larry James presents networking seminars nationally and offers Networking coaching; one-on-one or for your Networking Group! Invite Larry James to speak to your group! 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/

Sunday, July 17, 2011

What I Know For Sure About Networking. . .

Filed under: Network Training,Networking Tip — Larry James @ 7:00 am

“Networking is like gardening; don’t expect instant results,” says Janet White , author of Secrets of the Hidden Job Market.

“The currency of real networking is not greed but generosity.” ~ Keith Ferrazzi

NetworkHandshake“Your network is the most powerful resource you can have, and it’s free,” says Jan Vermeiren, author of Let’s Connect!: A Practical Guide for Highly Effective Professional Networking and founder of the Networking Coach Website. “People from your network can connect you with the people you need to reach your goals.”

My friend, Bob Burg, author of Endless Referrals says, “”Position yourself as a center of influence – the one who knows the movers and shakers. People will respond to that, and you’ll soon become what you project.”

“The best prospect is the client who has already dealt with you. The second best is the one referred to by a client who has dealt with you previously. The third best is the on e referred to you by another trusted professional or friend.” ~ Marilyn Jennings

Keep in mind, however, that the people in your network are not necessarily the ones who will ultimately help you. The trick is to find out who they know by asking the simple, obvious question: “Who else do you think I should be talking to?”

Networking is not about talking and taking, it’s about listening and giving.

So. . . here is what I know for sure about Networking: Networking is such an amazing and practical tool that it is important to know how to use it correctly.

To help you learn more about business networking I have compiled a list of all of the articles that are listed on this Networking Blog. To see the Networking Articles Index, click here!

netHQCopyright © 2011 – Larry James. Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. Larry James presents networking seminars nationally and offers Networking coaching; one-on-one or for your Networking Group! Invite Larry James to speak to your group! 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, July 13, 2011

The Best Thing A Business Can Recycle

Filed under: Customer Service,Follow Up,Guest Author Articles — Larry James @ 7:00 am
Tags:

Mike Liddicoat, Guest Author

Recycling is a huge part of our culture now. We recycle paper, plastics, metals, electronic equipment, the list goes on. Recycling can be very very beneficial for a business. The best thing a company can recycle is their customers.

Let me explain. As a business owner you know that it takes a lot of work to get a customer to do business with you. With almost any product or service available at the click of a mouse it’s a battle to get them in the door (or virtual door) let alone get them to come back.

So where do our customers go?

• Approximately 1% of your customers will not return or refer others because they will die. Well you can’t stop that one!

• Roughly 3% of your customers will move away and unless your a national chain you will lose that business also.

• About 5% develop other friendships. You may be the best realtor in town but if your customer marries another realtor your luck has run out.

• Approximately 14% of your customers will leave because they are dissatisfied with the product.

• Around 68% of your customers don’t come back because they perceive an attitude of indifference from you, they don’t feel appreciated. It’s the silent killer of your business. This is the single biggest reason why customers don’t come back. Often you don’t even know it’s happened.

So there you have it. About 3/4 of your customers leave you because you have failed to show them that you appreciate their business.

Here’s the big question, and yes you already know the answer. Is it less expensive and frustrating to try to get new customers to buy from you? or to simply recycle the ones you have and get them to come back?

Take a minute to send a card, give a gift or just tell them to their faces that you appreciate them doing business with you. That simple thing will keep them coming back for a very long time.

netHQ

Copyright © 2011 – Mike Liddicoat. Mike is a Husband, Father, Speaker and the Sales & Marketing Director of AttaBoy! Solutions. His goal is to help businesses maintain relationships, ensure future business and acquire new referrals through appreciation marketing. Throughout his blog you can sign up for updates, news, special offers, discounts and more. Take a look around, leave a comment or two and enjoy. Contact Mike at 888-428-8226 x102.

Larry James presents networking seminars nationally and offers Networking coaching; one-on-one or for your Networking Group! Invite Larry James to speak to your group! 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/

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Give Your Brand Personal “Curb Appeal” at Networking Events!

Filed under: Attitude,Business Cards,Dress for NetSuccess,Proper Dress,Self-Image — Larry James @ 7:00 am

Making a great first impression is important if you want to be successful in business, especially when it comes to networking events. People form permanent opinions of those they meet within a few minutes of setting eyes upon them. Making a great first impression can be tricky to say the least. Our words, appearance, actions, facial expressions and body language play an important part of how others perceive who we are.

Every point of contact with your personal brand should reflect the impression you want to make on your potential customers, clients and friends. There are many key differences between top-producing salespeople and low performers. Both show up at networking events and you can spot the losers from across the room. They stand out. . . AND so do the winners!

If you show up in attire in which you are comfortable but less dressed up than the event demands, are you being authentic (true to yourself) or disrespectful of other networkers/clients? You are being disrespectful of other networkers (clients, etc.) and it is tantamount to hurling an insult, because it shouts “my comfort is more important than impressing you.” People get it when you dress to impress and they smile inside with delight.

networking2Do you demonstrate a memorable impression? Attitude should be at the top of the list! It’s a quality that makes people say “wow,” when others first see you. It’s your own personal “Wow Factor.” If you are depressed or have had a bad day, stay home! Don’t spread that attitude to others. Veg out on TV and give yourself some time to bounce back.

How does your smile measure up on the smile-o-meter? No one likes a sour-puss. When you greet someone, Leil Lowndes, author of, “How to Instantly Connect with Anyone: 96 All-New Little Tricks for Big Success in Relationships,” says to use what she calls a “slow-flooding smile.” Leil says, “Instantly switching to a 100-watt smile can make you seem phony. Instead, let your smile slowly when you make eye contact. This sends the message that there is something about this person in particular that you like.”

I’m sure you probably know someone whose dress, behavior, or body language, makes you want to avoid them. When attending business networking events, dress like a business person. Over dress rather than under-dress. Dress appropriately for the occasion, of course, but always appear a little more polished than everyone else. The way you dress and carry yourself makes a difference. You don’t have to be on the “best dressed” list for the year, but dress for success, and at least dress up for the occasion. People with bad grooming habits and a crummy outlook on life detract from their personal curb appeal.

buildyourbrandMaintain eye contact long enough to determine the color of their eyes. No stalker-staring. People are inclined to like and trust those who make strong eye contact rather than someone who is constantly looking over their shoulder to see if they can find someone more interesting to talk with.

Face people directly when talking with them. Even a slight turn away signals your lack of interest and can cause the speaker to shut down. No slouching. If you want those you meet to talk more, slightly nod your head up and down as if agreeing with them. This sends a message of acceptance. Research shows that people will talk three to four times more than usual when the listener nods in this manner.

It’s important to be mindful of the nonverbal communications you are sending to your networking friends, to potential clients and other people you meet. You ARE your “brand.” Bring your personal touches and creativity to each event. Make sure you wear your brand in the most favorable way.

When someone hands you their business card, (whether you want it or not), treat it with respect. Take a few intentional moments to read it, comment on it, if appropriate, then put it in whatever pocket you’re putting the “possible future contacts” cards in or the pocket that contains all the contacts that you are sure you have no interest in contacting. Never just shove it in your pocket or purse.

Never invade someone’s personal space. Standing too close or too far away may make them feel uncomfortable. On an average, if anyone is closer than 18 inches, you may find them backing up or looking for an excuse to move on.

Be a “committed listener.” If you have a sincere interest in the person you are talking with, listen for clues that might help you keep the conversation going. Leil Lowndes, tell us, “If you can spot these words and topics, you can redirect dull, forgettable small-talk conversations toward things that people actually want to talk about.”

Overall, the perception of untrustworthiness, cleanliness (bad breath and body odor), lack of charisma and more is what detracts from your brand’s personal curb appeal. Be interesting. Be noticeable. Be friendly and personable.

Ineffective brand curb appeal undermines success! Jazz up your personal presentation of you!

Your curb appeal doesn’t matter what YOU think about it. . . it only matters how others perceive you.

BONUS Articles: When You Shake Hands. . . Really Shake Hands!
What About Business Cards. . .

netHQCopyright © 2011 – Larry James. Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. Larry James presents networking seminars nationally and offers Networking coaching; one-on-one or for your Networking Group! Invite Larry James to speak to your group! 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!”

commentSubscribe 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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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

You Don’t Know Who They Know

Filed under: Networking Tip — Larry James @ 7:00 am
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Andy Lopata, Guest Author

Click book cover to order!When we go along to networking events most of us look at who is present and ask ourselves who we need to speak to, who our potential customers are and who we consider to be a waste of time. This approach can severely hamper our prospects as we may write off people who can prove to be the perfect introducers for us or spend too long trying to sell to someone who may never want to buy.

The people who you meet at networking events have the ability to connect you to many types of people, from housewives and school teachers, through engineers and nuclear scientists to the Chief Executive Officers of global corporations.

When you first meet someone you can have no way of knowing how they may be able to help you, or to whom they may be able to connect you. You will not know when they may be the key contact you need or what they could do for you in future.

It may be that there is no clear connection between the two of you, yet they could be the ideal person to refer to someone else in your network or you may know the perfect person to help them.

A name badge or a business card is not going to tell you this. It takes time to speak to people, to ask them questions and get to know them before it becomes clear how they fit into your network.

From the book, “…and Death Came Third!” by Andy Lopata.

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Copyright © 2011 – Andy Lopata. Reprinted with permission. Labeled “Mr Network” by The Sun, Andy Lopata was called “one of Europe’s leading business networking strategists” by the Financial Times. The co-author of two books on networking, Andy is a featured columnist the US magazine “The National Networker,” as well as being regularly quoted in the national press. Previously, Andy was Managing Director of UK network Business Referral Exchange. Andy has since worked with companies from one-man bands to organisations such as NatWest Bank, Merrill Lynch and Mastercard to help them realise the full potential from their networking. He is a former vice-president of the Professional Speakers Association. Visit Andy’s Website and BLOG.

Larry James presents networking seminars nationally and offers Networking coaching; one-on-one or for your Networking Group! Invite Larry James to speak to your group! 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
Follow Larry’s “Authors & Speakers” BLOG at: http://www.AuthorsandSpeakerNetwork.wordpress.com/

Friday, July 1, 2011

The 3 “Rs” of Networking

Filed under: Networking Video,Video — Larry James @ 7:00 am
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Mark Jefferies, Guest Author

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Copyright © 2011 – Mark Jeffries. Former Merrill Lynch stockbroker turned author and Keynote Speaker, Mark Jeffries, has become a trusted adviser and communications consultant to some of the world’s largest and most successful organizations. Visit Mark’s Website.

Larry James presents networking seminars nationally and offers Networking coaching; one-on-one or for your Networking Group! Invite Larry James to speak to your group! 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
Follow Larry’s “Authors & Speakers” BLOG at: http://www.AuthorsandSpeakerNetwork.wordpress.com/

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