To build influence, you must connect with people!
However, despite countless resources that all provide advice on how to best connect with others, very few people still approach networking opportunities with the right mindset.
Whether you’re about to have a face-to-face conversation or you just want to connect more socially with others online, here are three keys to keep in mind to help you achieve greater networking success:
1. Listen For What The Other Person Needs
The first key to successful networking stems from the mindset you must possess if you want to succeed—Am I helping to meet the needs of the other person before I ask them to do anything?
We all know that asking a woman for her hand in marriage on the very first date is a sure fire way to guarantee you won’t be getting a 2nd one!
Similarly, asking someone to do something for you before you’ve first invested in a conversation with them will equally kill your chances of creating a mutually beneficial long-term relationship.
Remember this: Building relational bridges through service helps to get you noticed and remembered!
Be sure to pay attention to…
What’s important to them?
What issues are they facing?
What things do they appear to value?
Plain and simple, networking is all about relationships…
And others will eventually distrust any type of relationship with those who are always asking for something with empty hands held out!
Key Networking Takeaway: People are more inclined to do things for those they trust.
2. Share More About Yourself
While it’s most important to be helpful in a networking conversation, it’s also important that you help the other person get to know you better.
As you engage in conversation, be sure to mention…
What you both may have in common (i.e., “I too graduated from _______!”)
Passions you both may share. (i.e., “You and I both sound like we’re hardcore Alabama football fans!!”)
Remember this: Just be yourself!
As you let your guard down, you increase the chances that the other person gets to see more of the real you!
Key Networking Takeaway: People are more inclined to do things for those they know.
3. Clearly Ask For What You Need
Finally, be sure to clearly ask for any needs that you may have that the other person may be able to assist with.
Maybe you need a simple favor…
Or maybe you need an introduction with someone they know…
Whatever it is that you need, if you’ve focused on getting the first two keys above right, the other person should now be more inclined to hear and to help with your request.
Key Networking Takeaway: People are more inclined to help to meet a personal need if they are made aware.
You have influence…
So it’s important that you connect intentionally with others!
Keeping these tips above in mind can help you to network more effectively and go further faster!
Now I’d like to hear from you…
What other tips do you have to achieve greater networking success? Let us know and add to the conversation by leaving a comment below.
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