Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James

Monday, July 21, 2014

There are Networking Advantages…

When a motivated group of business owners come together there is an abundance of advantages and opportunities! When you arrive 10 to 15 minutes early for your networking meeting you have several advantages over those who choose to arrive late!

The benefits to being early include exchanging business referrals with other members, getting to know them better, talking over new business ideas, taking a few moments to select your choice of breakfast (or lunch), asking for advice, scheduling a breakfast of lunch with another member to get to know them better and much more. Being visible and getting noticed is a big benefit of networking.

NETAdvantagesOh, yes! …And most important, arriving early demonstrates the value you place on your time, the importances of the meeting, and the time of others.

Myth: Better late than never!

Reality: Better never late!

I understand that there are times when being late is unavoidable, and I also understand that if being late is a constant problem, being aware of the problem will help you look for and implement a solution. Want to raise your business profile in the group? Suggestion: Leave for the meeting early! Arrive early – stay late! If you make this a part of your plan for the day… problem solved!

Good attendance at your networking meeting is consistent with getting good business referrals. A “hit & miss” approach simply doesn’t work! Networking takes effort… much like all the other things you consider important to the success of your business. The seed to achievement at your networking group is being there consistently. Most people will only refer business referrals to people they like and trust. Building a trusting relationship with someone requires being in touch with that person and seeing them on a regular basis.

I also understand that business comes before business clubs. And if business is so good you have no need to attend, maybe you should consider creating an opening in your business classification so that someone else can benefit from “active” membership. OR call the leader of your group and let them know that you are: busy, not interested, or whatever. Any member who misses any meeting should extend the courtesy of calling in an excused absence.

And while I’m on a roll… the purpose of the “30-second connection” (often called your elevator speech) at the beginning of the meeting is to help you to learn more about other member’s businesses and the type of business referrals they would like to have. Consider the possibility that you can learn a lot more about them when you actually “listen” than when you are talking while someone else is speaking.

When I am asked to speak to networking groups around the Greater Phoenix area, I enjoy watching how the group responds when members are giving their “30-second connection.” Often there are quite a few private conversations going on during this very important part of the meeting. I know, you’ve heard it all before, however, as a courtesy to the member who is telling you about their business, let’s remember to give them your full attention.

When you give your “30-second connection” at the beginning of the meeting, please remember to speak louder than normal so everyone can hear and remember to talk slower than normal so everyone can understand what you are saying. Remember, this is a time when we all learn more about other member’s businesses. Please: No talking, other than the person speaking to the group.

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Copyright © 2014 – 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 Networking 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 “Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James” and receive a fresh networking article or tip every 4th day by e-mail. Click on the “Email Subscription” link on the right under the “search” box. You can unsubscribe anytime!

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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Sunday, February 23, 2014

Networking Goal Achievement is NOT an Individual Sport

Filed under: Accountability,Mentoring — Larry James @ 8:30 am
Tags: ,

You cannot be successful at business networking alone! It’s about finding the right accountability partner to help you reach your goals. The very first members of your accountability team should be the individuals who will help you to learn the necessary skills to reach your goals. Choose this person very carefully.

accountabilityNicole Bandes writes:

You must have accountability partners. These individuals are a unique breed and require careful selection. Here are some of the things to consider when looking for a good accountability partner.

1. Spouses and/or significant others DO NOT make good accountability partners. There’s just too close of a relationship there to make this work. I have an amazing relationship with my husband and I would NEVER consider ruining that through working with him as my accountability partner. Even if you work with your spouse, it isn’t a good idea. See Business Partners.

2. Business Partners do not make good accountability partners. They are too involved in the end goals to be objective.

3. Friends and family do not make good accountability partners. They are likely to be either too soft on you or too critical. Accountability partners need to be able to walk a fine line between being understanding and not letting you get away with your BS.

4. Colleagues do not make good accountability partners. They are usually great for a week, maybe three if you are lucky. After that, they get distracted with their own objectives and goals and don’t stay in touch with you or follow up when you don’t check in.

5. An effective accountability partner should have an ability to determine your motivational style so they can help yo develop a plan that will keep you engaged in your goals long after the initial excitement has worn off.

6. An effective accountability partner should be willing to follow up with you when you fail to check in on your goals.
An effective accountability partner will hold you to your commitments even when you have a “really good reason” for not doing what you committed to.

7. An effective accountability partner will be there to help you brainstorm solutions to challenges that are getting in your way.

8. An effective accountability partner will help you to see just how far you’ve come when doubt and fatigue are setting in.

It isn’t always easy to find a partner that will truly be committed to helping you achieve your goals. Most people have a lot going on and would love to help but just can’t spare that much of a mental commitment let alone a time commitment to check in with you regularly.

When you are able to find someone who is willing to make this kind of a commitment to you and your goals, be sure to write out a clear description of what the expectations are from both parties. This will help to remind you each of what your responsibilities are to be. Also be sure to include a clear end date that may or may not be renewed as agreed upon by both parties.

BONUS Articles: It’s the “A” Word… Accountability!
Need Help Networking? Find a Mentor!
Networking Mentors – Be One and Find One

Copyright © 2014 – Nicole Bandes. Nicole’s passion is to inspire women entrepreneurs to find harmony and balance in their lives so they always have time for their “WHY.” Visit her Website at: http://LifeSystemOrganizer.com

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netHQLarry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Networking 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 “Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James” and receive a fresh networking article or tip every 4th day by e-mail. Click on the “Email Subscription” link on the right under the “search” box. You can unsubscribe anytime!

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
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Monday, November 11, 2013

Another SECRET to Successful Networking

Filed under: Accountability,Network Training — Larry James @ 7:30 am
Tags:

Do you hate your job but keep on networking hoping everything will get better? If you don’t LOVE what you do, consider doing something that you DO love!

Do you complain about how bad your business is but keep on networking hoping everything will get better?

NETsuccessDo you whine about not getting business referrals, give very few but keep on networking hoping everything will get better?

I’m curious. What makes you think that everything will get better?

People who hate their job, complain and whine usually have their minds so pre-occupied with things other than networking that they are usually the ones that try to “get” as much as they can (“giving” very little) and after a time, dropout and say that networking didn’t work for them.

I am convinced that when you have “a genuine love of people” networking cannot fail. People who love people do everything they can to offer assistance to others in their network when needed. They actively seek out referrals to give to other networkers. They know that for networking to work they must first “GIVE” and when they do that… they also know that they will receive even if it is not from the once they gave to.

The people who hate their job, complain and whine, most certainly need an attitude adjustment. Sometimes I just want to shake them and say, “Haven’t you learned yet that networking is about giving?” They usually have their mindset cast in stone. In other words, they think they are right and keep doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that that’s crazy. They come across as desperate and thing that networking will solve their problem quickly.

Networking doesn’t work that way. Effective networking requires a long-term commitment. It takes time to build relationships – the kind of relationships that fosters trust between members. I don’t know about you, but when someone I just met comes up to me at a networking event and asks for referrals or attempts to give me their sales pitch… I want to get out of their presence as quickly as possible. I used to have more patience. 😉

NETCallMeI started 10 networking groups when I lived in Tulsa. A requirement to be admitted to the group was at least an hour and 1/2 of networking education… going over the groups bylaws, stating the groups purpose and the 10 commitments of networking, a list of do’s and don’ts, and much more.

When they left this session they were about 30 steps ahead of most people who never pause long enough to get themselves educated about the do’s and don’ts of business networking. Our group was had about 65 high energy members. Only one member in each classification, eg., one Realtor®, one banker, etc. Our meetings were held over lunch every Wednesday and almost everyone attended because they knew that it was a group that meant business and they didn’t want to miss out on anything.

We often had contests with really great prizes and other exciting things happening that encouraged everyone to work together. Enthusiasm was our buzzword! I taught our members that networking should be FUN! Every member was held “accountable” for bringing referrals… at least one each week. No referral – you got a “good natured” fine of 25¢. Every quarter we held a drawing and gave the winner the kitty. If you didn’t bring a referral on the day we had the drawing, your name did NOT go in the hat. In our first year, our members exchanged more than $2,500,000.00 worth of business. Is that a group you might like to be in? It worked so well with the first group that we had people clamoring to join so I started nine more groups in different areas of town.

This might be an idea that you may want to pass along to your group leaders. I have been actively involved in networking for more years than I care to remember. If you work it right and play by the rules – give… and then receive (and be patient in the process) you will reap rewards that you cannot imagine. It’s called netWORKing for a reason! I am always happy to receive phone calls from leaders of networking groups to discuss how I might be able to provide this training, to help you start a new networking group or to schedule a one-on-one for networking coaching. Serious minded leaders can call my Cell at 480-205-3694. I live in Scottsdale, AZ.

Love people, actively seek referrals to give to others and just do what’s right! That’s a big part of what makes networking work.

BONUS Articles: Does Your Networking Group Have a “Community” Presence?
Community… Not Just a Buzzword!
25+ Articles about Networking Training

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Copyright © 2013 – 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 Networking 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 “Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James” and receive a fresh networking article or tip every 4th day by e-mail. Click on the “Email Subscription” link on the right under the “search” box. You can unsubscribe anytime!

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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Monday, August 19, 2013

It’s the “A” Word… Accountability!

Filed under: Accountability,Mentoring,Networking — Larry James @ 7:30 am
Tags: , ,

Some of you networkers will not like this article. Why? Because I’m going to ask you to move out of your comfort zone.

For many, networking is not something that they are comfortable with. For others, networking is just not working!

ANPWhy is that?

There are as many reasons as there are networkers, however I’m discovering that most networkers have had no formal training about “how to” network. They attend weekly meeting or large events, collect a bunch of business cards that collect dust on their desk. After that… they’re lost. They haven’t a clue what to do next. They focus their efforts on selling their services primarily to the members of the group. BIG mistake! They can’t answer these questions: “What does a good networker do?” or “How does he/she act?” or “What is his or her basic attitude?”

Networking is much more than just getting out and meeting people. The best way to succeed at networking is to make a plan, commit to it, learn all the networking skills you can and execute your plan.

“Accountability breeds response-ability!” ~ Steven Covey

Here is an idea that has worked well for the many networkers that have requested coaching.

Find an “accountability networking partner!” So, what’s that? An accountability networking partner is someone that is similar to a mentor. It’s someone who you already have a relationship with; someone you trust. You must be authentic to each other. You agree to meet at least once a week to have lunch and review your networking progress; you brain-storm new ideas that work all designed to increase your networking performance. You agree to hold each other accountable for learning more about networking. It’s someone who will nudge… make that “push” you out of your comfort zone; someone who will hold you accountable to do what you know you must do to stay out in front of your competition and be more successful at business networking.

When you decide to have an ANP (accountability networking partner) you must first keep your word to each other. Be at the weekly meet-up (no excuses) and come prepared to review your past weeks successes and failures while networking. Consider this a long term project – at least six months, perhaps longer. You must become strategic partners. Create and discuss some new networking goals. It’s important to focus; begin developing relationships now with the people whose help you will need in the future. Volunteer for positions in your group.

Discuss how many times did you offer, ideas, tips, business leads, etc., to others in and out of your network of support. You may want to visit other networking groups together. You will be encouraged to focus on giving to others first and receiving from others second. In other words, don’t become known as a “taker.” You will drop the “what is in it for me?” attitude and focus on others. Always prioritise helping and giving to others ahead of taking and receiving for yourself.

accountability“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

The more you put into your ANP meeting, the more you will get out of it. It is truly a winning formula. Why? Because you both will benefit from this strategic alliance. Business networking is productive and fun, and that is why it will always be the right road to business success.

BONUS Articles in the Networking Article Index. Click here and begin your new networking education.

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Copyright © 2013 – 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 Networking 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!”

Invite Larry James to speak to your networking group or at your networking event! He is also available for a two hour networking seminar.

Subscribe to “Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James” and receive a fresh networking article or tip every 4th day by e-mail. Click on the “Email Subscription” link on the right under the “search” box. You can unsubscribe anytime!

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: Larry James, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com

NOTE: All articles and networking tips listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationship BLOG” at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com/
Follow Larry’s “Wedding BLOG” at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com
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