Breaking Myths About Career Networking, Networking Events, Networking vs. Selling

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  • A misunderstood concept.
  • A strong network development requires making connections that can sustain more than a simple introduction.
  • A contact or connection cannot be established by an initial meeting or contact with someone.
  • Follow-up should be there in developing a mutually supportive relationship.
  • Developing relationships (not just contacts) is the key to opportunities.
  • To be eager to or to listening to a “sales job” about one՚s value is different from developing a relationship based on mutual needs/interests.
  • Contacts may be immediate.
  • A relationship can be established and built only over time.
  • To build a strong relationship, Credibility and trust are much stronger cases.
  • The potential to build begins with:
    • The first introduction.
    • Requires the investment of time and energy for follow-up.
    • The follow-up and continued contact is a prerequisite to developing relationships.
    • Will support ones desire to be remembered.

Networking Events

  • May be in themselves intimidating or misleading.
  • The inexperienced networker may be under pressure unnecessarily whenever any event is referred to a “networking opportunity” .
  • Building a network:
    • All situations or events that allow interaction with others.
    • Provides the potential for building a network.
    • Lead to something closer to his or her desired outcome.
  • It is very important to prepare what one will say and to know what the objectives while attending an event are.
  • One should be prepared for asking questions.
  • Identifying the settings or situations that one is most comfortable with.
  • Planning time in advance.
  • While some people follow an informal setting others prefer a structured event.
  • Practising and participating until one can move on to other:
    • Less comfortable interactions.
    • Still succeed in developing connections.

Networking vs. Selling

Networking

  • Network building requires time and commitment to helping others.
  • Requires a mutual understanding from the start that it is about “what we can do for you” rather than “what you can do for me.”
  • Networking requires showing a concern and interest in others:
    • Help building the credibility and trust.
    • Credibility and trust are the mainstay of establishing an effective network.

Selling

  • Is the “Drive-by” networking?
  • The kind of networking that most people experience.
  • Saying hello to many people.
  • Passing out business cards but does not include any follow-up.
  • An ineffective means to establish a productive network.
  • The success of sales situations depends upon the relationships.
  • A relationship requires:
    • Time to build.
    • Requires integrity, credibility and trust.
  • The salesperson needs to ask questions and listen to the answers to establish trust and credibility.
  • Need to show an interest in audience՚s needs or concerns.
  • Rapport-building cannot be accomplished in 30 seconds.
    • Cannot be accomplished without asking some questions.
  • Identifying audience՚s (an individual or the group՚s) needs.
  • Presenting intelligent solutions or responses.
  • Asking prepared, thoughtful questions that can actually produce meaningful results.
  • By providing helpful connections.
  • An initial good impression is the beginning of a longer-term relationship.
  • A nurtured relationship grows over time.
  • Relationship could potentially lead to:
    • Securing a new position. In the meantime, you have.
    • Establishing oneself as a reliable, concerned, problem solver.

Networking Tips

  • Asking questions and listening to the speakers.
  • Identifying his or her concerns or interests.
  • Offering solutions or connections.
  • Using email or phone for immediately follow-up.

One Being Referred to a New Contact

  • Referring the party to any new correspondence with the new contact.
  • Keeping the referrer informed of about the progress.
  • Making sure one has considered new resource carefully and have prepared questions well.
  • Taking the time to note it and reference it if the original contact has provided with inside information.
  • Ask questions using open ended that can be easily understood.
    • Using open-ended sentences, i.e.. . , “Please describe,” “please tell me about,” “how would you …”
    • One should be specific in what he/she is asking.
  • It is more specific to ask “Please tell what he/she like the most about one՚s industry” .
  • One should always remember to thank anyone that has taken time:
    • To help him/her by providing information of any kind.
    • A thank you goes a long way.
  • Staying in touch with new contacts.
  • Letting new contacts know that he/she is thinking of them.
  • Sending an article of interest or even simply updating them about the progress.

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