Network, Network, Network; you hear this all the time. Business coaches, Life coaches, Mentors all say you need to get out there and network.
It can become quite overwhelming. Before you know it you could be attending network meetings morning and night, weekly, monthly and you start to think is this worth it. Is networking taking too much time away from my business? What return is it giving me – I haven’t got heaps of clients. Is this sounding familiar to you? Then it becomes too easy to not go to meetings, to stop your networking.
And that – stopping your networking – could be one of the biggest mistakes you make in business.
I understand completely how overwhelming it can be. I’ve been there and yes there have been periods when I have pulled back completely from networking.
Networking is not for selling, it really is not for getting new clients. Networking is for building relationships, for connecting with other business owners and like-minded people. The selling and the clients is a fantastic by product of building those relationships. It’s the relationships that are important, the connections you make and the credibility you build up. This is the value and power of networking and why it is essential to your business.
A few weeks ago I proved the value and power of networking. Did I get a client, a big job, a big contract? No, I got something much more valuable for me at that time – I got help and assistance with a sudden challenge.
I host a bi weekly live radio show and I have a guest on the show each episode. The discussion with the guest is the highlight of the show and takes approximately 45 minutes of conversation. An hour before this particular radio show I did my usual check-in with my guest, only to get a frantic message back I’m sorry I got the time wrong and can’t do the show now I thought it was tomorrow. My guest was in America and those pesky time zones had caught us out.
So I took a deep breath and put a request out on Facebook to find someone to be my guest at an hour’s notice. The power of networking answered. People who I had connected with through networking on line and offline answered. I received support and assistance because they knew me and I knew them. We knew each other and trusted each other. We had built a relationship and credibility.
So, next time you are feeling overwhelmed with networking and want to stop think about the power of building relationships that are mutually beneficial.
Three things to help you network and avoid overwhelm.
1. You don’t have to go to every network meeting that is around. Choose wisely – think about the people attending and think about how the meeting resonates with you and your business. When you have chosen be consistent – go to the meetings and build those relationships.
2. Remember it’s about the relationship, the knowing, the trust and the credibility. Go to your meeting with a mindset of connecting. Be you, be authentic and be genuine. Give and you will receive.
3. Persist and take the time to build the foundations. You don’t realise how powerful those foundations can be until you need them.
Truly networking may one day save your business, your sanity and your stress levels. It did for me.
Oh and one more thing – have confidence and self-belief in you, your business and your message. Put yourself out there and share and most of all if you need assistance have the courage to ask. You will get an answer – if you have networked effectively. It’s all about making friends!
Love to hear your networking experiences and thoughts.
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Multi International Award Winner Speaking Mentor, Coach
International Best Selling Author Radio Host
Clients work with Trish because they know she can help them have the confidence and self-belief to leverage their business with speaking and communication. Trish typically works with introverts, authors and advocates helping them to have the confidence to step up and share their message with those who need to hear it. Believe Act Share and become empowered for success.
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