Networking is all about building long-lasting business relationships! However, there are two distinctions about networking relationships that people who network must know.
One is the relationship that is there because you want something from the other person and the other kind of relationship is an “authentic” relationship which is there because you genuinely care about them as a person in your network of support.
Understanding these two distinctions can really up your success ratio at networking events and have you move from failure at networking to success much smoother.
Networking is not just about attending networking events, it’s about the people in your network who are around you who genuinely want to help you. It’s also about who you need to meet and who can assist you in getting to where you want to go. You must communicate your biggest challenges and how other people can help you.
Let’s review my definition of networking:
“Networking is. . . using your creative talents to help others achieve their goals as you cultivate a network of people strategically positioned to support you in your goals. . . expecting nothing in return!” ~ Larry James
So. . . what’s this about expecting nothing in return? Often we expect people who we help to help us. That would be nice. And it doesn’t always work that way. Some people are in better positions to help some than others. Just give. That’s the key! Just give. Willingly.
Authentic relationships must be based on a foundation of respect. They occur when trust and understanding are at an optimum level. That doesn’t happen until you really get to know someone. AND. . . that takes time. It will require you to schedule some one-on-one meetings with each other – not to sell – but to determine each others interest in continuing the relationship to help each other. Never try to rush a relationship.
Those who have the kind of relationship where they want something from you practice “eye-to-name tag” contact. They glance at your name tag to see if you are someone to whom they can pitch their product or service and then quickly blow you off to get to their next victim. These people are clueless!
To establish an “authentic” relationship requires “eye-to-eye” contact. It’s not asking them what they do, it digging deeper to discover common interests and ways to help each other. It’s also discussing mutually beneficial ways you can assist each other in the challenges that you face in business.
You sell THROUGH the people in your network, not TO the people in your network. If your intention is to GET business you must talk NON-BUSINESS first! ~ Andy Lapata
We network to become better known, to become better equipped to be successful in our business and to become better connected, NOT to sell. We need to understand that we network to meet the kind of people who we would like to know will speak well of us and refer us to others.
So. . . from now on network to establish “authentic” relationships; people who you get to know on a deeper level and who – in time – you will call your friends!
Copyright © 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!”
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