I am becoming more and more aware of the need to network with other people.
This morning I read an article from Inc.com entitled “The 10 Secrets of a Master Networker.” I’ll give you the “secrets” and then a link to the whole story:
- Don’t network just to network. What’s the point of your networking? What do you want/need to accomplish?
- Take names. Create lists of people you know and want to know (i.e. “aspirational contacts”).
- Build it before you need it. When you’re desperate it’s probably too late to build a meaningful relationship (Problogger has an article on this subject here).
- Never eat alone. “Invisibility is a fate worse than failure. Above all, never, ever disappear.” Stay connected to people! What you’re doing is too important for you to become a recluse!
- Be interesting. Have something of value to offer. “Being known is one thing, but being known for content is something else entirely — and much better.”
- Manage the gatekeeper. Artfully. Remember this, if you annoy the secretary, you’ll not get to the CEO.
- Always ask. If you don’t ask you will not receive! This applies to requests for a meeting as well as for favors. Make the ask.
- Don’t keep score. “Successful networking is never about simply getting what you want. It’s about getting what you want and making sure that people who are important to you get what they want, too. Often, that means fixing up people with one another.”
- Ping constantly. Once you’ve made a connection, maintain it regularly (e.g. a birthday card, an e-mail, a connection they might want to know about, etc.)
- Find anchor tenants. Feed them. “You, me, every one of us — we have our peer set, and we can always have dinner parties with our peer set, but if you keep having dinner parties with your peer set, why would somebody two levels above your peer set ever come to your dinner parties?” he asks. “The point is, you don’t randomly invite somebody two levels above your peer set to your dinner and expect them to come, because they won’t. They want to hang around people of their peer set or higher. This is a crass way of talking about it, but this is the formula.”