So much about networking well draws from the basic lessons we all (hopefully) learned growing up:
→ Treat others as you know they’d like to be treated.
→ Be kind, polite, and considerate.
→ Help others feel good about themselves.
→ Be thoughtful of others’ needs and do little favors for them.
→ Listen with patience and interest.
→ Say thank you, a lot, for others’ kindnesses and help.
→ Compliment others on a job well done . . . even their smallest accomplishments.
Sounds simplistic, doesn’t it? But these are precisely the practices that highly successful networkers continuously sharpen.
One secret to purposeful networking for great results is to understand it’s all about giving. Don’t ask for a favor or an introduction or a piece of someone’s time, until you’ve first made the effort to help that person.
One of the biggest networking blunders is overwhelming people you’ve just met with requests for favors. Think about how you’d feel, being bombarded in this way.
Coming on too strong will most likely guarantee losing a potentially valuable contact.
According to Liz Ryan, Job Search Networking Pro at job-hunt.org, “New relationships are for cultivating, not harvesting.”
In a recent article, Managing the Networking “Second Date”, Liz offers some suggestions on how to softly ease into and slowly build what could be a lasting, mutually-beneficial business relationship. An easy-going approach is the ticket for healthy online and real-life networking.
Mom and Dad were right. Good manners matter and will serve you well in all respects.