Is it time to grow your circle of business contacts?
Learn about what others have to offer? Give your office or organisation credibility? by AtTheMatch
Networking in its purest form is simply talking to people, making connections and developing rapport to grow your circle of influence. By developing long-term relationships for mutual gain and creating lasting impressions with people you will be learning a life skill which has many applications for you both personally
and professionally. Business networking should focus the attention on growing your organisation and developing two-way dialogues that have benefits to all
parties involved. When you network you give and receive.
Here are a few benefits of networking:
1. Information sharing – The depth of knowledge and experience from a group of people can be staggering. Networking will provide many opportunities to ask
questions and receive feedback. Discussing other points of view really expands your knowledge base, and allows you to see things from a broader
perspective. Learning from other’s “best practices” saves time, energy and resources.
2. Connections – When opportunity “knocks” you want to be in a position to take advantage of it. Many times there is a need for information-sharing, joint ventures, partnerships, and even needs for services. Having a wide network of individuals to contact may be the difference in seizing the moment or missing it completely.
3. Promotion – Whether promoting yourself or your organisation, having a large network may assist you in moving your career forward, promoting a new product
launch, or driving new members to your organisation. “Word of mouth” is still one of the best forms of advertising. Spreading good information about you or your
organisation may provide leads for career advancement or organisation growth.
4. Credibility– Improving your reputation and finding support are also benefits of networking. If you are successful at networking, you might get a reputation for
being a person people will want to talk to and get to know. A good reputation leads to support. You may have valuable information, ideas, and resources those in
your network may need. Establishing your desire to assist a colleague increases your credibility.
5. Self Esteem– Making new friends and socialising is an important aspect of our human nature. Developing new relationships leads to higher self esteem and confidence. By taking the steps to improving yourself and connecting to people you are moving your career forward. Your confidence will continue to grow as you become more comfortable with networking. Confidence draws people to you and opens up the opportunity to gain more information for yourself and share information with others.
The important thing to remember about networking is the growth you will experience by putting yourself “out there” and taking steps to improving yourself and
• When attending an event in person, try to find out in advance who are the attendees
• Research Web pages to find out information and items for discussion topics
• Make sure you have your business cards with you to easily provide your contact information.
• After talking with someone, take a moment to write something on the back of their business card that will boost your memory later. Something distinctive about them such as how they were dressed, accent, color of hair, etc.
• Remember you only get one “first impression” so make it good, smile!
• Put more emphasis in LISTENING to them rather than speaking
• Prepare an 30 second biography that you can comfortable present to others
• Compile a list of five questions that you can ask to “spark” conversation
• Get involved once you are there. Participate in discussions, and be visible
• Attend a networking event at least once a month. Practice makes perfect
So where do you begin?
Joining the AtTheMatch club entitles you to attend our monthly networking - Where Business and Sport Meet events.
Each monthly session includes an interview with stars from both the playing, business and journalism side of the game. The events allow business to be done for our members in a social and friendly environment whilst gaining a real insight into lessons we can learn from sport for our everyday business. Club membership starts from £250.00 that also includes a presence in our printed and digital magazine - ensuring everyone gets a return on their investment.
For more details and to register click here
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