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STOP the Cycle of Networking That is NOT Working

This appeared on LinkedIn this week and speaks to EXACTLY why you should join and be involved in WWLI -

Is your Networking Notworking?

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“The best networking events I’ve attended or hosted are those that are more informal. In fact, I don’t like meeting people “to increase my network.” I like meeting people, well, just to meet people. And I like to start out by keeping the whole thing on a personal level. I enjoy getting to meet everyone in the room, not just the people who I have made eye contact with. And you can’t do that easily unless the event is set up to give everyone a chance to speak. And not exclusively about (yawn) what they do for a living. For me, it’s got to be fun, or it’s not memorable.

I think it is because I truly believe that all business is personal. And so when I meet people, I want to know their stories. I find that taking time to understand a person’s journey gives me more insight into how we’re ultimately going to work together. It doesn’t usually happen immediately, it can take several meetings or conversations to find the “clicking point.” But once I can connect with someone to better understand how his mind works, it becomes easier to see places where we’ll be successful working together.

How can you stop this cycle of networking that is NOT working?

These are some of my ideas — I’m sure you can add some of your own.

  • Throw out the idea that quantity is better than quality.
  • Take the time to ask questions that have nothing to do with business.
  • Don’t start the conversation by handing out your card when you first meet — it is rude. And people will focus on your card and not hear you!
  • Don’t ask someone to “Link In” with you without a personal message about WHY you want to add him/her to your network.
  • Participate in group discussions, share your experiences and expertise and more importantly, expect NOTHING in return.
  • Pay it forward. Connect people you know who can help each other.
  • Go out of your way to attend events to just meet people. Don’t expect to get a deal.
  • Don’t push your products (your politics, your religion, your business) when you first meet someone, it is very off-putting.
  • Keep in touch. Visit other people’s profiles. Share their posts.
  • Don’t pretend to be confident. A little humility, humor and honesty goes a lot further than bravado.”

You can read Wendy’s entire article here:

http://www.linkedin.com/today/post/article/20140428131834-662117-is-your-networking-notworking?trk=tod-home-art-list-large_0

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