Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James

Friday, May 29, 2015

Oh, No! Another “Weekly” Networking Meeting!

Yep! I said, “Weekly!”

If you haven’t already found a group that suits you, visit as many groups as possible that spark your interest. This may take some time to determine your interest in them and their interest in you. Take all the time needed. Your choice will play a major part in your success later. I never recommend joining the first group you visit.

NETWeeklyMeetingsFind a networking group that meets weekly, is highly structured and hold their members accountable for building relationships with each other and who encourages active networkers to actually look for business referrals for other members. BNI is one such group.

The goal of your networking group of choice is to bring together a group of business owners and professionals who are truly best-in-class in their respective business categories, and create a sense of responsibility for each member’s growth and success. The members should make every effort to learn about each member’s business, gain trust and confidence, refer high quality referrals and enthusiastically promote each other whenever possible. These ideas would be a great mission statement for any effective networking group.

Are their meetings at breakfast, lunch or evenings? People who get their day started on a positive note with a breakfast meeting are often the most serious networkers. Lunch is next on my list and evenings are way down the list. I’ve noticed that people who are not doing well, seem to gravitate to the evening meeting and will often head to the bar and are really not that serious about networking… but more interested in selling. There are exceptions, so choose the time that your group meets carefully.

Notice the tone and attitude of the group. Mix and mingle with as many members as possible. Do the members of the group demonstrate a support for one another? Does the leadership appear competent? How often do they meet? (Weekly is always BEST). Ask lots of questions from lots of people there to get a feel for the group. This means questions that ask who, what, where, when, and how as opposed to those that can be answered with a simple yes or no.

KenBlanchardSuperstar networkers will occasionally show up at large networking events which are usually held monthly or quarterly. They quickly discover that these events almost always yielded no fruit. Why? Because meeting only a few times a year doesn’t support developing long-term relationships. They are fun to attend once in a while but I’m frequently put off by so many uninformed networkers who shove a business card in your hand and ask you to buy their product or service.

Weekly meetings demand commitment. I love being around totally committed people! You must adjust your schedule to attend every meeting every week and stand by your commitment. It is much easier to build a relationship with someone when you see them every week.

In this video (4:15), Ivan Misner supports the “weekly” meeting idea. He details his response to a gentleman’s proposition of monthly, as opposed to weekly, networking meetings – in other words, his suggestion that networkers should have a “Networking Light” option as opposed to going for the “Full-Calorie Networking” system.

Suffice it to say, opting for “Networking Light” has never done anyone any favors, and his secret to success in business and life (which he shares in this video) has a lot to do with never cutting corners or skimping when it comes to his daily recipe for goal achievement.

BONUS Article: 3 Essential Questions to Ask for Your Networking Plan

Video Copyright © 2015 – Ivan Misner. Called the father of modern networking, Dr. Ivan Misner is the Founder of BNI and the senior partner for the Referral Institute. He has written nine books, including his New York Times best seller, Truth or Delusion? Busting Networking’s Biggest Myths.

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netHQText Copyright © 2015 – Larry James. 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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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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Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

No Pressure Networking

Mindy J. Selinger, Guest Author

When you take the pressure of “selling” out of the networking equation you will notice that conversations will flow easier.

Relax. Networking is about meeting new people and learning what is unique about them in a business sense.

NET-NoPressureMuch of the fear about attending large networking events comes from the unknown… not knowing what to talk about. No more random conversations for you.

Seek out the person standing alone and strike up conversations. Be the rescuer or forlorn networkers. You know their pain. You may find a gem of a connection you would have never met because they were not in the middle of the action.

You are about to learn a few pre-qualifying questions. Questions are a combination of four simple questions that are used to determine if the stranger could be a PowerPartner for you (someone with whom you like and trust; and to mutually have each other’s back). These questions support the non-sales, information-gathering strategy everyone needs to know. It’s time to get a much broader intention when you enter a networking event; that of building alliances, and gathering information, plus the strategies to carry out that intention.

1. What business are you in? What does your company do? What line of work are you in? Many times the answers to these questions will give you a clue to additional partnership possibilities.

2. The second piece of information you need to know is where they fit in the company, so you may ask: “What is your position with the company?”, or “Is this your own business?”

3. You are in the middle of a great conversation, but most importantly, you know exactly where you’re going with your questions, and the next one is the most important one: “What is your target market?” or “What type of client do you work with?” Hopefully, the clients they describe are your clients too.

4. This question continues to zero in on the perfect PowerPartner: “How long have you been with your company?” If the question to this question is, “I just started with them last week,” that person may have little clout, and very few contacts. Not so fast… It could be they’re very well connected, having moved to their present job after a long association elsewhere. They could still be a good connection. The point is: Do not jump to conclusions, keep digging.

Larry’s NOTE: I’ve written numerous articles stating that business networking is about building relationships. These 4 questions will get you started, however, it often takes months to build the kind of relationships that are worthwhile and long-term. Keep the conversation going – if you see a possible relationship, follow up with an offer to get together to learn more about each others businesses and how you can best help each other. Make your connections count! Follow up! Please don’t be too busy to follow up! There can be no relationship without effective follow up.

There now… that should better prepare you to jump into the deep end of the pool when you network at a large networking event!

BONUS Articles: “How Can I Help You?”
10 (+ 2) Networking Questions That Work Every Time
32 (Actually) Interesting Networking Questions You Could Ask Instead
Working a Room If You’re SHY – No Pills Required
Do You Fade Into the Wall?
Out-of-Meeting Follow Up

Copyright © 2015 – Mindy J. Selinger. Mindy is the author of, “Face-to-Face Networking Skills,” and has been actively involved in business networking on many levels since starting her first business in 1991. More info: www.FacetoFaceNetworkingBook.com.

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netHQLarry 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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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/
Visit Larry James on LinkedIn
Follow Larry’s Networking Pintrest Page @ http://www.pinterest.com/larryjames2012/networking-blog/!

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