Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James

Friday, June 29, 2012

Don’t Have Time for Business Networking?

Filed under: Choosing a Group,Networking Tip,Time Management — Larry James @ 7:00 am
Tags:

Shame on you!!

Let’s get straight to the point.

If you are in business you must make time and and take time for networking. Period.

If you are a regular reader of this networking blog, you should already know that networking IS worth it.

wastingtimeWe are all given 24 hours in a day, so what sets the average business person apart from the highly successful business person is their ability to prioritize the 24 hours they are given.

Many people waste a lot of time trying to attend every networking meeting or event that they get notice of and as a result not much gets accomplished. It’s important not to burn out by trying to attend a lot of different groups. That doesn’t usually work. Don’t waste time!

It’s best to pick one group and focus all your attention and energy on developing relationships with the members of that group. The most effective groups meet about once each week. Put the meet up date on your business calendar and never make any excuses for not being there. Consistency is one of the keys. Other members need to see you there on a regular basis. Go early and stay late. There is no such thing as being “fashionably late” when networking. Some of the most effective networking is accomplished after the meeting is over – just hanging out with other members and getting to know them better.

You cannot make “long-lasting’ business relationship when you are jumping from one group to another.

Attending one major event perhaps once a month is okay too. However, I have found that there is not to much networking going on there. There are lots of people, most of which will push a business card in your hand and do their best to get to to buy their products and services. I don’t know about you but I seldom, if ever, do business with anyone I just met and especially someone who is only interested in themselves.

ticktockThe biggest percentage of people in smaller groups demonstrate their interest in you. They focus on building the relationship first – the right way! Remember that you get to choose not only which relationships you want to nurture, but also how close each relationships will be and how you will stay connected. Choose wisely.

Carefully choose the relationships in which you invest your precious time and energy to ensure that your success isn’t slowed and so that you experience a positive return on your investment.

Other than the one meeting a week, the rest of your time should be focused on your business, following up with one-on-one meetings with customers and clients and the members of your group and other business activities that are important to your success. Networking in but one part of your business – it is not the only thing.

Tick, tock, tick, tock!

Don’t let not having enough time stop you from building a strong network. You DO have the time. Prioritize and use your networking time wisely.

BONUS Articles: Networking Events are a Waste of Time…
Choosing a Networking Group
Shop for a GREAT Networking Group… Then STOP!
Breakfast or Lunch? Getting the Greatest Bang for Your Buck!

netHQ

Copyright © 2012 – Larry James. Adapted from Larry’s latest book, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. 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, June 25, 2012

Seven Steps To Building Your New Relationships Through Follow-Up

Filed under: Follow Up — Larry James @ 7:00 am
Tags: , ,

Sue Clement, Guest Author

Are you getting results from your networking? If all you have to show for your efforts are tons of business cards, you may have to work on your follow-up. Here are 7 tips to get you started… and get clients!

You spend a lot of time and money on networking, and you have pockets full of business cards to prove it. Maybe you even have them neatly scanned into your database. But are they simply sitting there or are you actually making use of them?

Here’s the thing: if you’re not going to follow up with your new contacts, you might as well save yourself the trouble of meeting them in the first place.

How2FollowUPSo get ready to learn the fine art of follow-up in seven easy steps:

1. Capture the info – You’ve got their cards. But what will you remember if you look at these cards two weeks or 2 months later? Probably not much. So right after the meeting or event (and even during, if possible, right after you met your new contact), take a moment to jot down any key facts you remember about that person or what you have talked about.

What does she do? What hobbies does he have? Jot down anything you discussed that will help you break the ice when you speak again.

2. Store the info – Next, make sure that the business cards of your new contacts have a home, either on your computer (get a card scanner already!) or in one of those big business card folders. Sort them by where you met them, type of industry, and the amount of follow-up time you plan to invest. Have a special place for those with whom you follow up repeatedly. And don’t forget to include your notes.

3. The first follow-up – As soon as you get home (or within a day or so), send them an email, telling them how much you enjoyed meeting them, adding a detail about what you discussed. Then add that you’d like to follow up to see how you might be able to help them with THEIR business.

That’s right, you’re NOT trying to sell them. Your focus continues to be on building a relationship. To many people follow up with a fast sales pitch about what they offer – don’t do it! (unless specifically asked)

4. Make the call – If they haven’t called you first, and they are a contact “with potential,” call them. Don’t make it too complicated. Just pick up the phone, and say that you’d like to follow up to find out more about their business. Remember you intent is to deepen the connection and discover how you might be able to help them (not to sell to them). Be sure to suggest a meeting if appropriate.

followup5. Meet them – Finally, meet them again, for coffee or lunch, and for exchanging information about their business (and yours as well). Ask them questions about their business and themselves. What are their hopes, challenges, and why do they do what they do? Who would be ideal referrals for them? Is there anyone you can make an introduction or connect them to? They will probably ask you the same questions, so be prepared with answers.

6. Give them value – If you can, be sure to send someone their way. Giving referrals can get you referrals. If you don’t have a referral but come across some information or an article they might find helpful, send it on over.

7. Build and nurture the relationship – Continue to build and nurture the relationship over time. Put them into a “contact” rotation, following up with them regularly. Think of activities they might enjoy and invite them to other events. Yes, golf can work. So can a networking event. Or even a seminar, workshop or any gathering that fits for them.

And that’s it. The steps are simple enough, but don’t fool yourself, it takes focus and dedication to do. Yet if you follow them, you’re going to reap impressive rewards. They’re designed to turn those pockets full of business cards into long-term business relationships and even friendships. Take these seven steps, and watch your business grow.

BONUS Article: Your Networking Fortune is in Your Follow-Up!
Networking is NOT a Card Game…
Networking Dilemma: What’s Your Next Move?

Copyright © 2012 – Sue Clement. A dynamic speaker, author, referral expert, and business coach Sue Clement is known for expediting business success. With over 30 years experience in management and sales, Sue brings a depth of real world experience to her clients and audiences. After building a local employment agency from concept into a multi-million dollar enterprise, she is no stranger to the challenges of owning a business and is an expert in marketing, sales and customer service. Sue is an advocate of building powerful networks to leverage one’s success. Visit her Website at: http://www.SueClement.com/

netHQLarry 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
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Thursday, June 21, 2012

Think Faster…

Filed under: Attitude,Change,Comfort Zone — Larry James @ 8:00 am

It is a waste of time and rather discouraging to continue to network if you are not having success with how you are doing it.

What do I mean when I say, “Think faster?”

STOPIt’s simple. Be quick to analyze what isn’t working when you network! Then stop doing it and do something different. This means getting out of your comfort zone. Stop making excuses! It means changing how you react and how you respond to others in your network. If what you’re doing isn’t working, perhaps it’s because you believe you don’t deserve it. Time for an attitude adjustment.

So many people I know go to networking meetings and events nearly every day of the week. They keep going hoping that something will change and someone will buy their product or service and maybe give them a business lead. They spend lots of time and energy doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. Some say that is the definition of insanity. I agree. The real cost in terms of time, stress and frustration is usually much more than simply admitting that an incorrect choice was made and that it needs to be fixed.

They expend more effort – which only saps their energy – on what is not working or they make attempts to justify their action as the only correct way of networking. In such a situation, what they need most is flexibility. Never get stuck with only one viewpoint. Try out as many perspectives as you can if you intend on being flexible. People who fail at flexibility are usually afraid to fail and to change. They don’t realize that change is the engine of fulfillment.

We all need to learn to think faster when we are in a networking conversation. Think on your feet. It about improv. Adapting to any given situation that arises and shifting the conversation to the direction you want it to go. Not like manipulation, but like a professional salesperson would to design a better outcome for everyone concerned. It must have direction and purpose. You may want to enroll in a class on improvisation.

“Using ‘yes… and’ can also help you direct a conversation to where you want it to go. Here’s an example: Your son says, “I hate my math teacher.” Instead of saying, “Well, that’s just silly” or, distractedly, “Aha,” and ending the conversation right there, you could say, “Yes, you hate your math teacher. And that reminds me of how much you hated your history teacher — until you started to love her. Remember? I mean, things can change, right?” ~ CNNLiving.com

Intuitive thought is usually the best way to keep the conversation going. Trust your intuition and its ability to bring to you the right thoughts at the right times. Sometimes you have to make it up as you keep going. Be careful not to say something that you will regret later. Always tell the truth. You must learn to trust your instinct. Be outrageous. Engage in positive reinforcement, not debate. You don’t have to prove yourself to be the smartest person in the room. Your brain does not have a speed limit. You just need to think faster and smarter.

A great business network is crucial for your career and business success. Even though most of us know this, we seldom spend enough time building and maintaining our network. You must have access to diverse networking skill sets.

Communication skills come with practice. It’s important to find common points of interest to talk about. What you say must add value to the conversation. You don’t have to say anything brilliant. You have to be brave, allow your inner voice to open up your mouth and speak encouraging words; not the same old stuff you’ve been saying that isn’t working. It takes practice. Lots of it. You don’t have to be the smartest, wittiest or brightest star in the room to make your mark. While some people naturally exude qualities that help them stand out in a crowd, making an impact on someone is a skill that is learned.

thePastLet go of the stuff that doesn’t work. Let it remain in the past.

You will learn from your mistakes AND that is HOW you learn. Do your best to tune your intuition so that you make perceptive leaps of logic to get where you want to be. Engage is new ideas and different perspectives that move each conversation you have with other networkers forward. Have a balanced conversation. Anyone who’s been on the silent end of a one-sided conversation knows how unpleasant it is, so be sure not to monopolize things. Think fast. Be interested and interesting. Ask questions to learn what your contact cares about. People become interested in you as a result of your interest in them.

“Be like a farmer. He prepares the soil for months before ever planting the seeds. He tends the seedlings with care, feeding and watering them regularly, putting up a scarecrow to keep pesky birds away. It’s a long, drawn-out process to go from seeding a field to harvesting the crops. There’s no quick return.” ~ Ivan Misner

May I have your attention please? Success isn’t just about how long or how hard you work – it’s about what you work at; it’s about working smart and knowing when something you are doing in business networking isn’t working. To succeed, you need to let other people help you. You can never get there by schmoozing, selling yourself and sucking up to people. That’s why the first rule in business networking is building relationships. Business networking doesn’t happen by itself. The kind of support you get from a network of support is immeasurable. That’s working smart.

Be flexible – if what you’re doing isn’t working, do something different. If you want something wonderful to happen as you network, you will have to do something different, and continue to vary your behaviors until you get the result you really want. It requires effort. It also requires you to think faster at discovering that you MUST do something different.

netHQ

Copyright © 2012 – Larry James. Adapted from Larry’s latest book, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. 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, June 17, 2012

Are you Positively Contagious?

Filed under: Goals,Networking,Video — Larry James @ 7:00 am
Tags: ,

Don Hutson, Guest Author

Charlie “Tremendous” Jones used to say that the people we meet and the books we read impact who we become. Jim Rohn said we are constantly in the process of becoming the average of the five people we spending the most time with. Dick Gardner said we are the sum total of the exposure we have gained. So…what type of impact do you think you have on other people?

These philosophies inspire me to pose two questions:

1. Who are you influencing? and…

2. Who is influencing you?

Ask yourself this question: Are you a positive force for others? The greatest gift you can give to those you influence is to be an energizing, mind-expanding force for growth and betterment! Theologian, Phillip Brooks said “Few things are more powerful than the contagion of a victorious personality!” Have you noticed that when you around a person with a dynamic, can-do spirit that it is not only inspiring, it is contagious?! I recommend that you not only try to be around people like that, but BE the person who personifies greatness through such influence.

goalsThe antithesis of the above are the energy-sucking cynics who have nothing positive to say about anything; only a never-ending monologue on what’s wrong with them, their miserable circumstances, and the perpetrators who have caused the malaise of a life they are experiencing. Do not spend time with these people. They will try to kill your dreams, spoil your day, and infect you with negativity, having no idea what a negative force they have become. You might want to stay away from these energy pirates!

Every day each of us chooses to either take the high road of possibility thinking or the low road of mediocre or negative behavior. Choose the road that will give your life meaning and energy! Choose to be a positive force for others, and endeavor to be around people who can positively influence your attitude, your skills, your possibilities, and you will propel yourself into previously unknown heights of achievement! So how positively contagious will you be today?

Don Hutson, New York Times best selling author of “The One Minute Entrepreneur” and “The One Minute Negotiator” shares the top 5 activities you need to know and do to actually achieve your [networking] goals:

Larry’s Note: My friend, Don Hutson is one of the most powerful professional speakers I’ve ever seen and heard!

DonHutsonCopyright © 2012 – Don Hutson. For more than 30 years, Don Hutson has been in the business of making people believe they can do better and giving them the skills to do it. He energizes audiences into action and is known for delivering real solutions for business professionals. As CEO of U. S. Learning, a corporate training entity, and the producer of US Learning Network Radio’s training and coaching programs, Don’s clientele spans 22 countries. Visit Don’s Website!

netHQLarry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. 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, June 13, 2012

10 Tips for Novice Networkers

Christian Business Networking, Guest Author

In observing businesses networking at our chapters and events over the years, there are mistakes that novice networkers make that could easily be avoided. We hope these tips are helpful to you!

net-workers1. Don’t try to ‘close a deal’ when you first meet someone.

Far too often networking novices push a sale before getting to know their potential customer enough to determine whether or not they truly have a need for their services.

In asking CBN Founder, Maia Arneson, she expanded… “I can remember one past member in particular. When visitors would attend he would sit next to them, ask them who their current service provider was and immediately ask for them to allow him to provide a quote. You could tell that this caused the visitors to shut down to him and it turned them off to the chapter as well.

When visitors attend a chapter, they go in hopes that they’ll be able to connect and to promote their own business. If they feel that someone in the chapter is too pushy it will sometimes cause them to not only avoid using their services but often they won’t join the chapter either. So, do yourself and your chapter a favor and don’t try to sell to someone you’ve just met.

2. Don’t say that you’re just starting a business.

Would you want to be a guinea pig? The members of our chapters don’t want to be either, especially not with their businesses. Unfortunately, if you’re just starting your business people will assume that you are new to your industry as well. It’s okay that it goes unmentioned. Let your quality product/services shine. Here are some ideas to help you to be honest yet sound professional and seasoned…

• If you have been in your field but are starting your own business out of necessity, focus on the number of years you’ve been in the industry or how you have expertise in the field.

• Share the types of clients you have helped in the industry… even if this was at your previous job.

• When you’re just getting started volunteer your services once a week and then you can use examples of what you’re doing for those clients. If people know you’re just starting out they like to hear that you have other clients. Sharing “a client I helped last week…” puts them at ease.

• Don’t say ‘you’re getting business cards printed & will bring them next week’ it’s better to wait a week and attend fully prepared.

3. Come prepared.

Odds are good that if you’re attending a networking meeting/event that you’re going to be asked to introduce yourself. Take a few minutes before you go to create an introduction. In Christian Business Networking we call these ‘Equipping Introductions’ since you’re using the time to equip your sales force with what types of referrals you’re seeking that week.

4. Don’t oversell yourself or your company.

No one wants to feel like they’re pushed into buying something. Enough said.

5. Don’t undersell yourself.

Even if you’re an introvert you can exude confidence and capability in your area of expertise. Unfortunately, timidity can be perceived as lack of knowledge. You’re the expert in your field. Remember that you only get one chance to create a positive memorable impression.

6. Don’t stress.

Everyone has a ‘first meeting’ that they attend before becoming a member so we all have grace for each other. Relax and stay calm. This may be your first time as a visitor but networking functions have new visitors on a regular basis so they’re used to people being a little bit nervous the first time.

7. Don’t put down the competition.

Even if the competition is really bad you can find tactful ways to talk about them if someone brings them up. If people know of their reputation, they will respect that you didn’t pounce on the opportunity to slam a competitor. Moreover, it actually makes you look bad when you put down the competition. Sell yourself and your strong points. Don’t rely on eliminating the competition, rise above the competition.

8. Consider providing a quick ‘tip’ in your industry that people might not know about.

Every industry has ‘insider know-how.’ Once again, to them, you’re an expert in your industry. A marketing person can share a tip on how to do something new in social media. An interior designer may recommend certain colors, staging ideas or thrifty ways to spruce up a room.

9. Consider arriving early to meet the speaker/facilitator.

This may help ease your jitters but it might also compel the speaker to point you out as they mention visitors. Surprisingly, people rarely arrive early

10. Don’t waste your time or theirs.

If you don’t have 2 hours the next week to follow up with calls or appointments with your new contacts, stay home. Don’t waste your time or theirs. You would be better off to spend that time connecting or reconnecting with your current client base in an effort to increase your client retention. So, another way to say don’t waste your time or theirs is… if you go, follow up.

Copyright © 2012 – Christian Business Networking Founder, Maia Arneson, graduated from the University of Arizona earning a Bachelor’s Degree with dual majors in Marketing & Business Management. In early 2003, after many calls from her contacts inquiring about Christian networking groups and with the support of Colorado-based Red Letter Publishing (www.RedLetter.com), Maia launched Christian Business Networking. Visit their Website!

netHQLarry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. 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, June 9, 2012

Enter a Conversation with Caution

Filed under: Introductions,Networking — Larry James @ 8:00 am

When I first arrive at a networking event the first thing I do is look for someone new to meet. I introduce myself and try to determine if there is some way I can help them or that we can work together. If they begin their “sales pitch” I quickly excuse myself and move on to someone else. I rarely hang out with the people I know.

Business people standing with hands togetherWhy?

Because your networking goal should be to help others first. Selling comes much later after you have developed a good relationship with them.

If you see a group of several people talking, use caution when approaching them. You may be interrupting an important discussion. It’s smart to come along side of the group, but do not attempt to enter into the discussion until you’ve made eye contact with everyone. It’s important to wait before joining the conversation until you listen and know what they are talking about and determine whether you can contribute something.

If the group doesn’t open up, you should move on. If several people move as if to allow you to become part of the group that’s when I move a little closer to their circle. Andrew Griffiths once said, “When we are in a group we behave a bit like penguins – we will shuffle to let other penguins in and then huddle back together.”

Opening up is usually a signal that you are being invited to become a part of their conversation. If that happens, listen and wait for an appropriate time to share something of value. If you enter a group and start taking over the conversation, the group will disband and you will be left on your own. To barge into a group is rude.

When someone is talking to you, make it a point to look directly at them. Giving them your full attention with your eyes will encourage them to share more with the group and with you. Don’t stare. It’s not a “stare-down” contest. The point is to give them your “full” – that means 100% of your attention.

dontbeboringIt is also important to initiate conversations with people who are standing by themselves. They are usually happy to have someone to talk with. Make small talk. Be creative with your small talk. Never be boring. How can you help them? Be sure to repeat their first name several times to make them feel good and to help you remember it.

Here are 5 questions that will help you keep the conversation going:

1. What do you like most about what you do?
2. You mentioned that you were in [industry]. What got you started in that direction?
3. What are some of your biggest challenges?
4. Where else do you usually network?
5. How can I help you? or How can we help each other?

Take time to communicate with the people you meet. Find out as much as you can about them and if you can’t see a way to help them or to do business together it’s okay to excuse yourself and move on to your next person.

Helping others is the focus. Demonstrate your networking skills by introducing each new person you meet to at least one other person at the event.

BONUS Article: Introducing Yourself With Humor – Make Your Networking Payoff

netHQ

Copyright © 2012 – Larry James. Adapted from Larry’s latest book, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. 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/

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Face To Face Networking Cannot Be Replaced

Filed under: Guest Author Articles,Networking — Larry James @ 8:00 am
Tags:

Susan RoAne, (The Mingling Maven®) Guest Author

In the main ballroom, they listened in rapt attention as the senior vice president described their mandate: “Stop relying on technology to communicate with clients and increase your number of face to face meetings with them.”

conversationsOver a thousand consultants of a Big Four consulting firm gathered in Florida from all over the world for a global conference, networking and golf. The attendees were cell phone wearing, laptop carrying, BlackBerry® holding adults of varying ages who were hearing that they now needed to adopt an in-person component to their business communication. I was there to teach them how to start, build and maintain conversations and connections so that they could grow their business practices. Many of the attendees were uncomfortable with the prospect of meeting the face–to–face mandate.

In Person Communication Counts

Although we live in a 24/7, online, digital world, the ability to interact and connect “real time” and in-person is increasingly important. Why? Because being able to do so has become increasingly rare. As more people circumvent face–to–face opportunities, those who capitalize on them will stand out from the crowd in both their professional and social lives. You can be one of them!

book-face

Click cover for info

Leaders Communicate

A survey of 4,125 MBA recruiters (Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2006) confirms the body of research that has appeared over the last two decades, which identify the top leadership attributes of sought-after job candidates: interpersonal and communication skills. In a recent 2010 study of 863 C Suite executives sponsored by The Economist Intelligence Unit, over two thirds indicated that in-person is imperative and in the long run, saves money.

Another Perspective: The FBI Dilemma

Pat, a long time member of the FBI, confirmed how important face- to- face and real time connections are. “The younger investigators are technically brilliant; they can research and ferret out the most pertinent and intricate bits of information online. They text message and are resourceful digital experts. However, we’ve noticed they avoid using their phones to talk to people and don’t schedule meetings with potential informants. Because of that, they don’t have the sources every agent needs in the field. Believe me, the people we need to be sources aren’t texting. It’s a dilemma.”

No matter how many text messages or emails we send and receive, online global conferences and webinars we attend, Skype calls we make or blogs we read and write, we also need to be comfortable and confident in in-person situations whether it’s one-on-one or in a group or crowd.

That’s why I wrote Face To Face. Whether it’s an interview, a client presentation, a business lunch, a division meeting or a friend’s wedding, we need to know how to interact, how to behave and how to connect with others in a diverse shared social space.

Shying Away From Being Shy

shyEvery day newspapers contain stories that show that we’re at a national loss for words… that are uttered in the presence of others. The national average of those of us who self-identify as shy has increased from eighty percent in 1985 to ninety-three percent in 2000. Dr. Philip Zimbardo, a founder of the Stanford Shyness Clinic, attributes this major increase to “the use of technology.” However, many situations that we encounter on a daily basis -in both our professional and personal lives- require what is known as “face time” – those in-person moments where we have to communicate, whether it’s with the local barista, our hairstylist, our boss, our coworkers or employees, our clients, the auto mechanic, our professor or even our cousins.

Facing Face To Face

What can we do to get better? Much like the answer to the classic question: How do you get to Carnegie Hall? Practice, practice, practice.

A game plan to work any room in-person:

• RSVP and say “Yes” to meetings, conferences, gatherings, fund-raisers, business mixers.

• Do Due Diligence and Prepare. Check out websites, google or Bing names of sponsors, members, speakers, attendees.

• Prepare a 7-9 second self-introduction that is an engaging pleasantry.

• Read the news… whether online or in print. Read both local and national coverage so that you can be knowledgeable and conversant. (That includes sports, entertainment, book reviews and restaurant/food features).

• Prepare 3-5 items in case you get stuck for subjects of interest.

• Leave your Bluetooth and gizmos and gadgets out of sight.

• Approach those alone or groups of three or more who sound and look like they are having a good time.

• Go to have a good time… and you will.

“Rinse and repeat” every chance you get and you will become at ease in the face-to-face space!

BONUS Articles: Face TO Face Communication in a Diverse World
Face to Face Communication in Sticky Situations

Special Note from Larry James: I just finished reading “Fact to Face: How to Reclaim the Personal Touch in a Digital World.” Wow! Susan has written another winner! If there ever was a Mingling Maven®… Susan is it. Serious about business networking? You need to have this book on your book shelf! Seriously!

SusanRoAneCopyright 2011 – Susan RoAne – Reprinted with permission. Susan RoAne is the leading authority and original expert on how to work a room. She 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, Face to Face, is out and her other books include How to Create Your Own Luck: The You Never Know Approach to Networking, Taking Chances, and Opening Yourself to Opportunity, 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

netHQLarry 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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Friday, June 1, 2012

Slow Down on Looking for Leads and Build a Network!

Filed under: Networking Tip — Larry James @ 8:00 am

“The richest people in the world look for and build NETWORKS, everyone else looks for work.” ~ Robert Kiyosaki

Building a network of business connections will always be a vital part of running a business. However, many people I see at networking events seem to be on a never ending, ambitious and over enthusiastic quest for business leads. My belief is that that is time consuming and a lot less rewarding than using the same enthusiasm for building a successful network of people who become your network of support. Those are the people you can count on; people who will gladly pass you a few business leads.

networkofSupportI repeat… it does take time, however, it's worth it. Knowing that you have people who will introduce you to the people you really need to know should help you to feel a little more secure in your efforts. Having people providing introductions for you expands your horizon. It puts you in front of people who can help you the most.

If you take into account people with whom you’ve done business or supported, such as vendors, past clients, and associations, the speed in jump starting a business relationship adds up very quickly. Who do you already know that you haven't been in contact with recently? Make a list. Get on the phone and book some lunches. Once you really decide to grow your business and can see the way that referral networks work, you’re much more committed to developing them ever more deliberately and skillfully.

Building a powerful network doesn’t just happen. It, too, takes time, but the result pay dividends beyond what you can imagine.

It’s important to tell the friends you already network with that they are an important part of your network. These are the people you see often face-to-face. Sure, you can use social media, but face-to-face is always best. I use social networks to help stay connected, but the more often you see those in your network the better it works.

netHQ

Copyright © 2012 – Larry James. Adapted from Larry’s latest book, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. 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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