Frozen Friday Networking Tips

While it is most certainly a “frozen Friday” the following networking tips make sense in any season:

Networking is not a passive activity. In order to recognize some ROT (return on time) you need to put yourself “out there” in whatever way that makes sense for you and your schedule. If you don’t have time for early morning meetings then there are plenty of afternoon and evening events that you can attend. If you are concerned about the high cost of many groups you can easily find groups that are very cost effective and some that are even free. The fact is that there is something for everyone and if you don’t make it a point to get active your networking results will suffer.

Follow-up with your contacts or stay home! Deals aren’t closed at networking meetings or events so you must make it a point to follow-up with the people with whom you connected. The initial follow-up will enable you to gain a better understanding about the potential for mutual introductions and long-term synergies.

Stay on the grid for the long haul. Getting a lead or an introduction from a networking contact can take months or even years and it is wise to create a touch point management program whereby you reach out and connect with your valuable networking contacts on a regular basis lest they forget about you and the services you provide. “Checking in” and “touching base” will get you nowhere except being considered an annoyance and so I suggest that you use the three I’s to stay on the grid. These include introductions, invitations and information, any of which will be well received by your contacts.

Give first. While reciprocity is never guaranteed you will be in a better position to receive an introduction if you make some too and it is always a good strategy to be the first person to reach out with a connection or lead. The phrase “givers get” may not come true however making a match between two people is always a good thing.

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