How would you like to have a fan club filled with people who know, like, trust and respect you? People who have a very clear understanding of what you do and exactly the kind of client you are looking for. People who will actually go out and find clients for you, and, best of all, theyll never charge you a cent!. Sound like a fantasy? Its not. Its all possible…if you know how to network.
So what exactly is networking? If you look at the word network, youll notice that it is both a noun and a verb. As a noun it is simply the people you know, your sphere of influence. As a verb, it is making use of that sphere of influence in an intelligent manner by sharing information and giving support. Networking today is about forming and cultivating relationships. The objective of networking should be to help other people succeed. The more you help others, the more they will want to help you. It is a simple law of nature: what goes around comes around.
Like anything else in life, though, networking is work–netWORK. You need to have very clearly defined goals and objectives in order to succeed. You need to have systems in place to make sure those goals and objectives are met, and you must have a plan of action.
Here are just few tips to help you build your business through networking:
–Know who you know! You cannot even begin to network, unless you know who is in your network! Make lists of everybody you know through family, friends, your children, hobbies, sports. For everyone on your list write everything you know about them, e.g, their hobbies, where they grew up, the type of dog they have, who their friends are, etc. Update this list weekly.
–Know who you want to know. Then figure out how to meet them. This is where you need to have a very clearly defined plan of action. Learn everything about the people you want to meet, and then figure out who in your network shares the same interests. It is very probable that they will know someone who knows the person you want to meet.
–Understand and appreciate your value to the people in your network. We all have unique interests, talents, and experiences which can be used to help others. Revel in knowing that you can touch the lives of everyone you meet if you are prepared to share your knowledge and resources with them.
–Develop systems to organize your information so it is readily accessible. Whether its a Day-timer, a contact management computer program, a Rolodex, or good ol index cards doesnt matter. Use whatever works best for you and allows you to retrieve information quickly so you can pass it along in a timely manner.
–Strategize ways to consistently get your name before the people in your network. You want to be at the forefront of their thinking so when a potential client presents him/herself to someone you know, that person immediately makes the connection and makes the referral. This is the ultimate goal of networking.
–Give, give, give! Give freely of yourself, never expecting anything in return. Trust that what you put out there will come back to you. It may not come back immediately. It may not come back, directly. It will, however, come back eventually. Just give.
1999, 2001 Leni Chauvin
Leni Chauvin is a Client Attraction expert who has has been
coaching ordinary people to build and market extraordinary
businesses since 1993. The strategies in her Attract Clients
Galore System(tm) have helped thousands of solo professionals
get more clients without having to spend a fortune to do it.
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