Can we agree about the meaning of networking? I don't mean computer
networking. For our conversation, business networking is about getting to know people whom you can help and who can help you. Does that simplify it for you, enough to feel better about it?
Many people have a complex definition for networking or get stymied by the
action the verb implies. Let's take some of the mystery out of a basic way to get to
know people and have them get to know you. Then, if either person needs
something, there's an opening to facilitate this - it happens to be called,
? Networking is about shoving your business card in someone's hand and
boasting about what you do.
? Business networking can include exchanging business cards, usually
following a brief get acquainted conversation. Learn to ask one simple get-to-
know- you question with comfort and curiosity: "What do you do?" The business
card exchange is not a requirement. Getting the help you need from someone - a
business referral, a contact, a job - doesn't come from a business card exchange. It
comes from relationships in networking.
? Some of us think when we attend an event with the word "networking" in it,
that we are the only one there to - listen to the program, meet people or make our
? Everyone is at "networking" events for similar reasons! To build your
networking expertise, think about everywhere you go as being a form of
networking. Waiting in supermarket lines, going to sporting events, enjoying
festivals, stopping in your local bookstore or library, everywhere you go, there is an
opportunity to meet and talk with people you don't know. The "event" then becomes
just another way of meeting people. We are mingling with people who are at this
"event" for similar reasons to our own!
? Networking is work.
? Okay; this is reality. But it's work to find pleasure in! Stay in touch with
people who you enjoy and respect, even if there's no immediate need. A handwritten
note will go a long way in them remembering when you do need them. Is that so
It is written, "ask and ye shall receive, knock and it shall be opened unto you,
seek and ye shall find." If we don't ever ask, if we don't knock, if we don't seek then
we won't receive! It's acceptable to ask for what you want, particularly in
Pat Weber is a coach, certified telelcass leader, and corporate trainer. In her
business coaching, she works with small business owners, independent
professionals and salespeople to help them get more of what they want sooner than
Visit her website at http://www.prostrategies.com. Sign up for her free