The word “network” has become a bit trite in our culture today. People are always talking about “networking” and it has led to a stigma of insincerity. When people are creating connections with others for the sole purpose of receiving a benefit, networking becomes insincere and a negative practice.
The benefits of a strong network are numerous. Growing and maintaining a strong network is where the challenge comes, but it is much more a question of persistence and thoughtfulness than of intelligence or skill. Here is how you can grow your network by 1000 percent in the next three months in an effective and sustainable way:
1.Do it for the right reasons.
Secondly, ask yourself what you need to do to accomplish those goals? Do you need to ask them to chat on the phone for 30 minutes or could you just email them with a few bulleted questions?
If you want to connect with someone because you want a job at their company, that is a reasonable reason to reach out. Just be thoughtful about how that person might be able to help you get a job and what you would need to do to elicit that help.
2. Spend time in communities that you would like to be a part of.
3.Do not be afraid to take the first step.
First off, it is extremely easy to find someone’s email address with the countless tools that currently exist. Secondly, sending a message is not rocket science. Briefly introduce yourself, tell them what you need and include why they should care. No need to send a super long email or take more than a few minutes to write it. Give thought to write a subject line they will click on and the time of day you send the message. Do what you can to elicit a response.
4.You aren’t limited to just email.
you cannot overstate the power of connecting in person. Because everyone is there for the same reasons, it is easy to start a conversation. Following up from there becomes significantly easier.
5.Be persistent and consistent.
6.Use referrals whenever people offer.
7.Keep track of people in some way.
8.Consistently follow up.
Learn what they are interested in and what their pain points are. Therefore, whenever you are in a situation where you can add value to them, you will be able to do so. These small acts will make them like you significantly more and strengthen the bond that you have.
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