"Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much" ~ Helen Keller
On occasion we all want to curl up on a sofa and drag out that stack of magazines that have been gathering dust, craving a quiet diversion from hectic business life. But pull yourself up from your comfy yoga pants and attempt to ignite a feeling of motivation forcing yourself to shower and dress to go to the latest ‘meet and greet’ session that you had used a black marker to "X" off the full calendar.
Dive Right In
About five minutes into the meeting you are feeling relaxed and glad to have taken control of the urge to issue a rain check for the event. You have already shared an interesting conversation with a new contact and by the end of the meeting it is more than just business cards you empty from your purse. It is the phone number of the new contact you’ve just connected with that you are sure you will see again!
As Sam Walton once said, "We’re all working together, that’s the secret."
And it is! Since we are all working together it is important to form a network of people that surround you that you are comfortable with, who share your passion, who can contribute to each others’ growth, both in profit and performance. Always first share, maybe some small tidbit of information or maybe lend support for their charitable cause. Because networking establishes a two way street and involves much more than just business interests. It is building friendships and long lasting alliances that ultimately benefit both parties. Open Yourself to New Ideas
Listen…be attentive to each and every person. Listen for new information, cutting edge business ideas. Take the time to learn the ‘story’ about person before you learn the ‘story’ about the business. Share your own individual story because it describes who you are, where you have come from, and describes the first building block of your business.
The bottom line is that we often leave a networking event feeling confident that the contacts made will be effective and long term. The entire event closed on a positive note and you experienced an evening where you felt you could be yourself, and in the end you have a really interesting contact to add to your business network.