Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James

Thursday, July 16, 2015

No Close Relationships ~ No Referrals!

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

Relationships! That’s where you begin. People only do business with people they like and trust. No relationships – No referrals! You must KNOW these close relationships! Really know them. Networking is not about how many sales you can make. It’s about starting at the beginning – the introduction to someone new and then working the relationship until you become close business friends. That’s when the business referrals will begin to come to you.

NET-PluggedINWhen you talk to other networkers, make it clear that you want to help in whatever way you can and that their business sincerely matters to you. Every connection has to be heartfelt, or it won’t work.

One thing I know for sure. I know that collaboration between networkers in networking meetings and outside of the meetings is a principle driver of creativity, innovation and, therefore business advantage. Continue to build your network outside of the meeting. Failure to invest in collaborative techniques will greatly hamper your networking productivity.

I also know that to get recognized and noticed as a professional networker you must do things that help others before you can ever expect them to do things like passing along a referral to you. If you help people out when they need assistance, then people will help you out too. When you take the time to build and nurture relationships with the people around you, you’ll build a network of “allies” who will help you when you most need it. You call attention to yourself by paying attention to others.

Do you really know the people in your network? I mean, “really” know them? We all need to dig a little deeper. Be on a crusade to develop closer business and personal relationships with those in our network. Schedule follow-up meetings to visit their office, read their flyers, and really get to know them personally and professionally. Carry their business cards with you in a large business card holder so you can be ready in case an opportunity to share their work with your friends outside of your network shows up. Professional networkers make friends easily… close friends. The closer the connection, the better networking works!

“There is no greater reward then helping others help themselves.” ~ Larry James

We all need to get to know those friends that are in our networking circle much better. We need to focus on “them.” We all need to dig a little deeper. We need to get to the good stuff about our networking friends. We need to get excited about knowing more about the people we are connected to. We need to learn more about their businesses so we can truly get excited enough about them and their business that we can’t help but want to share about them with our friends. After all, isn’t that what networking is really about… building close business relationships that support each other? You can’t do that if you think networking is always about selling “your” services to others and getting business leads. Networking is about giving.

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

BONUS Article: “How Can I Help You?”
Out-of-Meeting Follow Up
“Just Makin’ Some New Friends…”

netHQCopyright © 2015 – 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!”

the-archives2Click for Archives! ~ commentSubscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

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 on Facebook: https://www.Facebook.com/NetworkingHeadquarters/timeline
Follow Larry’s Networking Pinterest Page @ http://www.pinterest.com/larryjames2012/networking-blog/!

Advertisements

Friday, March 6, 2015

Master the Art of Delayed Gratification

Successful networkers realize that networking is a long-term relationship! Delayed gratification make everything worth waiting for. It keeps you focused building long-term relationships.

As a proactive networker you will find that you can create opportunities for your referral sources as you build a circle of high quality, not high quantity contacts.

delayedGratificationIt’s important to become a collaborative networking strategist. The collaborative strategist emphasizes cooperation as a joint effort – working together. The goal is shared gain. Collaboration is not only more practical, but a choice that offers the biggest win.

I always recommend that new networks be patient… be ready to wait. We don’t benefit in the end when we take more and give less. Study and model the successful networkers. They are the ones who have a plan each week to always be looking for business referrals to pass along to their connections.

“The ability to discipline yourself to delay gratification in the short term in order to enjoy greater rewards in the long term is the indispensable prerequisite for success.” ~ Maxwell Maltz

They know that it’s a prerequisite to give first and the getting comes when enough times has passed and the relationships are on solid ground. Focus on the ones who have learned the art of delayed gratification. They give and give and once mutual trust has been established they are the people who receive the most from their efforts because they have wait to create a balanced exchange.

In the beginning stages of a relationship there is no substitute for one-on-one meetings. That’s where you can get the low-down on other networkers. The extra time you are willing to spend to develop the friendship will really make a difference in both the quality and quantity of business referrals received in the future.

Project collaborations, strategic alliances and partnering opportunities are all examples of ways to leverage relationships for maximum gain and offer the biggest win for the greatest number of people.

So… don’t get in a hurry. Slow down. Take the time necessary to build strong relationships that result in the quality of leads and referrals needed to grow a strong network. When you spend quality time with people you’ve just met and constant attention to “qualify” these contacts, they will become a terrific source of future referrals.

BONUS Article: Delayed Gratification

netHQCopyright © 2015 – 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.

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/!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Do You Have ‘Cliques’ in Your Networking Group?

Filed under: Relationships — Larry James @ 7:30 am
Tags: ,

Ivan Misner, Guest Author

As you take a look at the networking groups you may be participating in, think about the relationships you have formed with the individual members. Do you have strong relationships with a select few, but disconnected and detached from others?

NETcliquesIt’s time to get serious about developing stronger relationships with each and every member of the networking groups you participate in. This includes people who you don’t think have the contacts you might want or perhaps are in a business that’s not exactly symbiotic with yours.

Have you ever thought to do one-on-ones with those people as well? Spend the time to do one-on-ones with each and every active member of your network – it helps you develop a longer and stronger network.

Larry’s NOTE: It’s very easy for cliques to form in networking groups. A clique is a small group of people, with shared interests or other features in common, who spend time together and do not readily allow others to join them.

A clique does serve networking groups well. It’s important to have good relationships with everyone in your group. As Ivan said, “This includes people who you don’t think have the contacts you might want or perhaps are in a business that’s not exactly symbiotic with yours.” Guess what? Networking is not only about getting leads for yourself. When you put “helping others” before getting referrals for yourself, you can more easily work the entire group. That will open up other possibilities. Those people you have been avoiding may know others that you need to know or can help.

If you see a clique forming in your group, do anything you can to break it up. Encourage networkers to sit with someone they don’t know very well. Encourage those in your group to have one-on-ones and report about it the following week. cliques are never a good thing when it comes to networking.

MisnerCopyright © 2014 – Ivan Misner & Larry James. 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.

ljspacer

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!”

comment

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/
Follow Larry’s Wedding Pinterest Page @ https://www.pinterest.com/larryjames2012/networking-blog/

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Are you a Network Dabbler?

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

When you first begin to network, it’s okay to dabble… short-term. It can fuel your creativity. This sense of curiosity is important as you test the waters and begin to check out what networking is about and how it can work for you. Dabbling is simply a way of gathering new information and experimenting with new ways of doing something with it.

Clarity comes from engagement. Dabbling is a form of engagement. You get to look at and try out a variety of ways to network – some work – others don’t and watch how others do it. Dabbling long-term is a mistake.

NETDabblerIt is wise to focus on the successful networkers – never the ones who hand you their business card (whether you asked for it or not) and solicit your business. They have no plan other than to meet people, tell them what they do, and see if that person may want to buy something. That is not the path to building a long-term, networking relationship.

It takes time for networking to begin to work. It requires an investment of time. Time to learn the ropes. Time to make new friends and develop new relationships.

Don’t be a quitter. Many people carry dabbling in networking to an extreme. They continue to just dabble and never quite move out of that stage. If you never begin to take networking seriously, you may be like many others, who start networking and eventually quit because they have not learned the discipline of finishing what they start.

Many never begin networking until their boss is on their butt to produce more sales. They come across as desperate – and most often they are – and to other networkers appear to be only a taker not a giver. To them networking is a hopeless sense that the situation is so bad as to be impossible to deal with. They describe their networking activities as unproductive, uncomfortable, a waste of time. And they quit!

Strategic networking offers you a way to change that, increasing your rewards, success, adding more meaning in your business and your life.

Networking is the art of connection. It requires the discipline to get out of your comfort zone and learn the techniques that successful networkers employ. There is much more to networking than attending a meeting, and collecting stacks of business cards. I repeat, it takes time to build a network. Your goal cannot be instant gratification because you will not find it when networking.

Smart salespeople who network don’t do all the talking, they have learned to ask questions and really listen to the answers. They get to know the person they are talking with by listening and internally thinking of ways that they can help them. That is the beginning of a new relationship.

If you’re creative and ambitious you will be a few steps ahead of others because you understand the concept of expecting good things to happen and have a knack of discovering ways to make things happen.

Education about networking can never be over emphasized. It is critical to your success. Study every networking tool. Expand your network. Learn from the networking leaders, read networking books, enroll in networking training and make it a habit to learn something new about networking every week. (If you are smart, you will share what you have learned with others in your network). Stay focused. No excuses. I have been actively networking for many years and I will admit that I do not know everything there is to know about business networking. I promised myself years ago that I would continue to learn and pass what I learned on to others interested in networking.

Although dabbling can lead to incredible innovation, it only works when you exercise your creativity and take what you have learned and do something different with it. You cannot continue to dabble in networking. If you do, you will see little to no results. People will assume you are either not serious, and are only there to make a quick buck, or forget you entirely.

You cannot continue to be a dabbler and succeed. Either do networking all the way, or don’t do it at all!

Once your dabbling days are done… it’s time to get serious about learning all you can about networking. Don’t just test the networking waters… jump in and make some waves! When you see other networkers doing great, let that drive you. Let that build your belief in knowing that you can do the same thing.

netHQ

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.

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

Monday, August 18, 2014

Elevate Your Networking Game

There are all kinds of people in networking. Some are confident and some are not. Self-confidence is important if you are going to be successful as you network.

Confidence is a strange quality. Most people don’t have anywhere near enough to push them forward to undertake tricky challenges. Our confidence is affected by a huge number of factors, including how we were brought up when we were young, our parents’ style and approach, the equality and strength of our relationships, and our own ability to maintain a positive self-image. Self-confidence can be gained only through practical know-how; know-how comes from knowledge and experience, and experience can be gleaned only through a willingness to confront obstacles and situations that others ordinarily fear. It is much easier to overcome any fear with a high level of self-confidence.

ElevateNETgameIf you are anything but a natural networker, you may obsessively worry about coming across as someone who lack confidence in your networking abilities. If you are tired of collecting business cards and funneling names into your contact database without actually getting anywhere you may want to think about what you must do to convert those names into friends who like and trust you and who are willing to pass referrals to you on a regular basis.

Profitable networking isn’t about generating leads or making a pitch-perfect impression that gets the sale on the spot. Networking isn’t about selling… it’s about developing long-lasting relationships. Perhaps more confidence in your networking abilities are required. Today’s competitive market and challenging economic climate mean you have to always be at the top of your game.

Confidence in yourself helps you deal honestly with your shortcomings and compels you to make corrections consistently. Confidence in yourself gives you a clear vision of your goal and creates desire that is strong enough to sweep away all obstacles. Confidence in yourself is the key to all achievement. It reinforces ability, doubles energy, expands mental facilities, and increases your personal power.

The real secret of successful networkers is the absolute confidence they have in themselves, their network, and their networking abilities. Those abilities come from doing what other successful networkers do and from being on a continuous journey of learning new techniques that work. Real confidence in yourself is always demonstrated by action.

Your network is your net-worth. Small-group and partner training programs are hot options. Better networking education in general may be the most important strategy for gaining a competitive edge. If you’re not staying current with the hottest networking ideas and getting better at what you do, your self-confidence will stagnate. Hopefully you will do everything you can to boost your self-confidence and elevate your game.

BONUS Article: Boosting Your Confidence – Grow Faith in Yourself and your Business

netHQ

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.

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/

Saturday, July 5, 2014

No Relationship is Ever a Waste of Time…

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

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know that business networking is about relationships.

Some say it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. There is a lot of truth in that, however, let’s take it a step further. It’s also who knows you.

NETrelationshipsYour value in the business world depends on what you can do for the people who are in your network of support. Thus, it’s important to carefully select the people you include into your network. It seems to make sense that the more people you know, the better off you will be. I have been careful not to limit who is in my network, but I am also aware that there are some people who I may not be able to help, who I might benefit from.

Networking is about people. People become your social capital. You need people… people you like and trust and who feel the same about you. People who are connectors; who can introduce you to the solid people in their network. Networking is about increasing your depth and breadth as a person. What begins as a business relationship may well turn into a close friendship. A widening circle of influence is an unintended result of networking, not necessarily a calculated one. You can never predict the end result of meeting just one new person.

No relationship is ever a waste of time because we can all help each other in some way. I may receive a business referral from you but may not be able to reciprocate, however, I may know someone else who can help. One of your goals in networking should be to know a lot of people who will do their best to try to help you when you have a specific need. Keep this in mind. You can lose social capital when you request more than that person can provide. Be careful to never confuse knowing someone, with actually having a mutually beneficial relationship with them. It bears repeating… beneficial relationships take time to nurture.

To be an effective networker you must be willing to help others without any assurance or expectation that you will receive anything from them. That is the true spirit of business networking. Give first and then you receive. Give the time and effort it takes to network without complaint. Successful networkers understand that a broad and powerful network is built over time.

Eventually the more people who know you will actually begin to seek you out. It’s like gravity. It works every time. When others notice that you are willing to help without expecting anything in return it becomes a force that draws more people automatically into your world. That’s when you can begin to notice that networking is truly worth the time and effort.

When you do nice things for others, you gain their attention and usually they will feel the natural desire to do something nice for you in return.

“If you are expecting to find a direct, immediate correlation between your networking activities and the dollars you harvest, you’re going to be sorely disappointed. … The returns you receive through networking are like the apples you pick from an orchard you started from a single seed. Eventually that tree will not only bear fruit but also spread the seeds that will ultimately become a whole grove of apple trees.” ~ Ivan Misner

To be a successful networker it’s important to treat everyone you meet with kindness and respect… not just the ones who may be able to do something for you. When you have learned the ins and outs of business networking and you don’t just hit and run from every group meeting you attend, but work to become grounded with a specific group of people, I promise that you will be meeting the right people at the right time for the right reasons.

netHQ

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.

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/

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Two Keys to Finding the Right Networking Partners

Ivan Misner, Guest Author

I once received an interesting e-mail from a man who read an article I wrote about collaboration and working together. He said, “The type of networking you talk about describes the way things should work, but in the real world most people seem to have an attitude of what’s in it for me.” He asked, “How can I prevent wasting my time and efforts on people, only to find that they have this kind of attitude?”

TwoKeysThe short answer to his question is this – stop hanging out with the wrong kind of people and start actively seeking out the right kind of people. Trust me, I’ve been there and done that when it comes to getting stuck with the wrong people and in order to move beyond that and build the kind of network that wants to help YOU (knowing that you also want to help them) is a journey – not a destination.

I have two suggestions to make finding the right networking partners easier.

First, look for some of the signs relating to people who fit the profile of good networkers. They include:

• People who ask how they can help you or what they can offer you (and mean it), before they ask anything from you.
• Individuals who show that they are willing to work on creating a professional relationship over a period of time because they understand that they must develop credibility with you before asking for your business or your referrals.
• Those who make the time to go beyond the normal business interactions with those from whom they want to be able to ask for support.
• Professionals who understand that networking is more about farming than hunting and show it in their actions by making the effort to get to know you outside of the business environment whenever possible, knowing that the more of a friendship there is between you, the more expectations you can both have from each other’s networking efforts.
• People who do what they can to bring business and contacts to you and their other networking partners, who share pertinent information with you, and invite you to business meetings that’ll position you favorably with others you need to get to know.
• Individuals who give of their time and knowledge in order to help their referral sources succeed.

Second, immerse yourself in the process of relationship building.

A network that is a mile wide and an inch deep is not a strong network. Create a personal network that is both wide and deep. Meeting with people regularly is the key to making this happen. Participate in networking groups where you are going to see the same people on a regular basis. This will help you develop relationships and screen out the “what’s in it for me” networkers.

Think about your current networking partners… who is one of your most trusted, most valued networking partners? I’d love to hear the story behind how you met this person and how you formed such a trusted, mutually beneficial networking partnership. Please share your story in the comments section–thanks!

BONUS Articles: A Network Relationship Takes Months to Build, Not Minutes
The Key to Success? Relationships!
Who Are You Talking With?

MisnerCopyright © 2014 – 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.

ljspacer

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!”

comment

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/

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Don’t Wait Until You’re Drowning to Reach Out For Help!

Likewise… don’t wait until you are desperate for business before you begin networking.

The odds against instant gratification are slim when you begin. You probably ought to get use to delayed gratification because networking will teach you patience.

drowningSo many people I talk with wait until they are at wits end to get involved in business networking expecting others to shower them with referrals.

SPOILER ALERT: It doesn’t happen like that!

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

Remember, networking and selling DO NOT mix! Think of yourself as a solution-finder, rather than a sales person. Be of assistance to others. “How can I help you?” is a great question to ask everyone you meet.

If you are serious about making business networking work for you, you must build relationships. That’s really what makes networking work! Developing close relationships take time. Seldom will anyone risk their reputation by giving you a referral or referring you after first meeting you. My friend, Tom Hopkins reminds us that people do business with people they like and trust. I may like you upon first meeting you but trust is quite another story. That takes time too.

It’s important to “make” time to really get to know the people in your network. Book breakfasts, lunches, visits to each other’s places of business. Spend time with them. Ask lots of questions. That’s how relationships begin. When enough time passes you will learn more about them as a person, their business, their likes and dislikes and you will begin to know them well enough to make some headway with referrals.

netHQ

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.

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/

Sunday, January 26, 2014

The Key to Success? Relationships!

Filed under: Goals,Networking,Relationships — Larry James @ 8:30 am
Tags: , ,

Steve Tobak, Guest Author

If you ask 10 entrepreneurs to tell you the key to business success, you’re likely to get 10 different answers. I’m sure one would say product innovation, and while that’s definitely a significant factor, it’s not the right answer. And, yes, there is a right answer.

The key to business success is winning and keeping customers. And the key to winning and keeping customers is, and has always been, relationships. The world’s greatest business experts – Peter Drucker, Mark McCormack, Regis McKenna and others – have all said the same thing in one way or another.

?????????????????????????????????????Unfortunately, you, my friends, have all been sold a bill of goods. You’ve been told that spending your time building your personal brand, growing your social media network, improving your productivity, identifying and enhancing your strengths, and engaging your employees, among other things, will make you successful. They won’t.

No matter what you do for a living or aspire to become, none of those fads du jour will have a material impact on how things turn out for you or your business. But building real relationships with real people in the real world will. Not convinced? Here’s why relationships are the key to business success:

Your most important asset is your network – not your virtual network, your real one. Every successful executive and entrepreneur will tell you, their most important asset is their network, and they don’t mean social network. They mean people they actually know and work with in real time because they’re the ones that actually get things done. One real relationship in the real world is worth more than 10,000 social media links, likes or followers.

Sales transactions are between two real human beings. Even with ecommerce, most sales transactions are still between two human beings. Think about it. Every significant B2C and B2B transaction involves a buyer and a seller, not to mention all the channel development and pre- and post-sales support. And the best product doesn’t necessarily win. Buyer behavior is mostly subjective and relationships are a big factor. In a service business, they’re the biggest factor, hands down.

When opportunity knocks, it’s always a person knocking … and answering. As much as we like to fantasize about opportunities just falling in our laps, the truth is, that never happens. Of the thousands of career and business opportunities I’ve been involved with over the past 30 years, every single one involved a real relationship. Every job, every piece of advice, every business deal, every vendor relationship – there’s that word – every single one.

So what does all this mean? It means there’s a good chance you’re wasting precious time, even years of peak earning potential, focusing on the wrong things to build your career and grow your business. I learned that lesson the hard way.

Ten years into my engineering management career, I thought I had everything going for me. I was young, I was smart, and I worked hard, but it was all about the job, the product. And you know what? I wasn’t really going anywhere. Until one day, some guy changed my life by talking me into making the transition to sales and marketing.

It took a while to learn the skills that would ultimately make me a senior executive in the high-tech industry and then, a successful management consultant, but I can attribute everything good that happened to me over the next 20 years to that fateful day and the relationships I’ve built since.

Which reminds me of a time, long ago. I was working at home and had just gotten off the phone and looked up to find my wife standing in the doorway. She looked at me in a sort of circumspect way and said, “Aren’t you supposed to be working?”

“I am working,” I replied.

“No you’re not,” she said, “You’re just BS-ing.”

I said, “That’s right. That’s my job.”

Back then, she didn’t get it, but now she does. It’s just like watching grass grow. You can’t see anything happening but one day you wake up to a beautiful lawn. Building relationships and a successful business career is just like that. Call it a leap of faith or delayed gratification if you want. All I know is, it works.

steve-tobakCopyright © 2014 – Steve Tobak. Steve Tobak is a consultant, writer, and former executive of the technology industry. He’s managing partner of Invisor Consulting, a Silicon Valley-based management consulting firm that provides business strategy, executive coaching, and speaking services to CEOs and management teams of small and mid-sized technology companies.

ljspacer

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.

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, October 22, 2013

Train Your Referral Resources

Whenever I talk with a client, at the end of the conversation I always ask if there is anything that I can help them with. Most of the time they say no… however, I go on to make suggestions of others in my network of support that may be able to offer their services.

Two businesswomen in suits shaking hands and smiling.There is a Cajun word called lagniappe (/ˈlænjæp/ LAN-yap). When I think of business networking I always think of that word when I am speaking with my clients and customers. My definition is: “give all you can… and then some!” In other words I always give my clients what I promise and then some. Under promise… over deliver. I consider that part of my service is to discover additional ways to help them.

I don’t just want customers and clients. I want to make new friends of them so that we can have strong, committed relationships with one another – the kind of relationships that has us thinking of each other and helping each others businesses grow and prosper.

“It may take awhile, but if you select and train your referral sources well and you use the system to its best advantage in referral development, you will really speed up the process of turning connections into referrals for your business.” ~ Ivan Misner

If you are not having a brief “networking how can I help you” session at the end of a client’s meeting, I suggest that you begin. I would bet that even some of the most successful networkers don’t remember to do this. It only takes a few seconds to say, “How can I help you?” It only takes a brief minute to offer referrals or people that might be able to help them. For me it’s an instinct wired deep in my brain… something that I now do automatically. Some of my most solid networking contacts continue to bring me unexpected referrals year in and year out. Many are my best friends. They can do a great job marketing for you when they run across someone that needs your service or product. Often you will have to coach them as you go.

When you interact with your clients, customers, referral sources, and contacts with a referral mind-set, show them that you are a “giver,” that you help others, and continually and strategically give referrals, you’re modeling the behavior you want others to exhibit toward you. Remember to talk “with’ your customers, not “at” them. People usually trust the recommendation of a friend, family member, colleague, or even stranger.

People do business with those they like and trust. Being there for someone with an unexpected offer to help can lead to more business than you can imagine over the years. It’s time that we take a serious look at training our referral resources better. Let them know that you can be a resource for them. Give them examples of how you have helped others. Be sure that they know the best kind of referrals that would be of interest to you. Referrals are only helpful if they’re given to the right people for the right reasons.

teamworkThe people you know that are in your network can be a valuable source of referrals… but they need to be reminded of this every so often. It’s important not to be a pest. It’s also important to make it clear that your are not just asking them for referrals but you are offering – first – to be of assistance to them. Be specific about this. When you are passing a referral to an untrained but potentially valuable referral partner, let them know exactly what you’re doing and suggest ways he can reciprocate.

I call this “recruiting cheerleaders.” I am building a team of supporters for my business by giving them what they need. These are people who not only help cheer you along, but sing your praises to others they know, spreading the great words about your business all because you offered to act as their resource whenever they need something. Talk about your resources. Maintain visibility. Let them see you in action. Let others know how well you are connected. They need to know that you are not just flapping your gums but are serious about helping others. It’s been said that just about anything you need can be found within 3 to 5 phone calls from a well-connected networker.

Many entrepreneurs continually pass up this golden opportunity to build their business. Train yourself at the conclusion of a successful client meeting to ask if there is anyway that you can help them, and to suggest that they pass along your name to others who might benefit from your services.

By talking openly and honestly about what you are doing, you are not only modeling the behavior you want from your potential referral partner, you are allowing them to think about it and to discover ways to incorporate what you are doing into their way of doing business and networking. Educate your customers. Share your knowledge freely. When you do, your business will generate referrals like a well-oiled machine.

Obviously there are no guarantees that reciprocation will occur, but I can tell you this, it most likely will not occur if you don’t casually train your networking friends about the benefits of giving.

BONUS Article: How Can I Help You?

netHQ

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.

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/

Next Page »

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.