NETWORKING FOR TODAY’S AGE
PRESENCE, POSTURE AND CARING
These are the key ingredients for the great recipe of “NETWORKING”
What is the definition of Networking? Socialize for professional or personal gain. Getting together with new acquaintances to ultimately complete a transaction or solidify a relationship. Connect for developing relationships into solid transactions or solid relationships.
4-IMAGE IS THE FIRST IMPRESSION, CREATE YOUR OWN STYLE BUT ALWAYS DRESS APPROPRIETALY TO THE SITUATION, (do some research for what the event is about. If you have an event at the Jefferson for Luncheon or an event at the Diamond, please dress accordingly to the situation, I don’t mean go spend hundreds of dollars on a new outfit at Nordstrom, I mean go to your closet and use your common sense or if you must buy go to Marshalls)
5-YOUR EYES AND YOUR SMILE ARE YOUR BEST WEAPON. WEAR A SMILE IN YOUR VOICE. (Always greet people on the phone by smiling, that smile will be transmitted through the electronic systems)
6-FOCUS ON THE OTHER PERSON, ASK QUESTIONS AND LISTEN FIRST. LEARN ABOUT THE OTHER PERSON (when you meet somebody new, let the other talk first, once you hear their story, you can adapt your behavior accordingly to the person’s story, I am not saying to be fake, but for instance if the other person has some serious business or personal problem, don’t blurt your problems trying to get more attention, just tell your story in plain terms, try to support the other person and the time will come when you can blurt all you need)
Let’s address each point one by one. When I talk about Image, I am not just talking about what you wear to any event. Although it is important to dress appropriately and in tune with the event always. If you don’t know the dress code, call and ask in advance. If you go to a Chamber’s meeting it usually is business professional, African American and Hispanic Chamber at their mixer’s always are the best dressed, I went to a mixer last year for the Hispanic chamber as they brought a Mexican food truck in the parking lot and guess what, the women had high heels and dresses, and I was casually dressed with leggings and a big top (That day I learned to always be with it) Also the way you wear your clothes is important, wear good quality clothing (even if you go to Marshalls) but totally important wear the clothing with confidence, straight posture, chest out with confidence, never look shy or timid, people will step over you in a mixer if that is the case.
I go to a certain network group where the CEO from large companies go, I met a few of the representatives of a company, I called several times nobody called me back. I met the director of this same company a few months ago, called nothing. Well 2 weeks ago I go to another network meeting and guess who I meet? The same director, of course he didn’t remember me by the look in his face, but even before introducing myself again, I told him “You have really cute hair (which honestly the gentleman has, (I am sure he had never heard that line) and I don’t think you remember me because you never answered my phone calls, but now will you remember when I send you an email asking for an appointment and I will mention you are the guy with the cute hair and I am the one with the gray hair. He said that was a deal. My appointment is for this coming Thursday
Most of all wear your smile and lit up your eyes. The eyes are the door to your soul, correct? Be energized, create a strong presentation with your eyes.
But besides personal presentation, Your True self, is when you put all your soul and sincerity in what you do, who you meet, how you introduce yourself and how you listen attentively to the other person. Let people look you in the eyes that convey a sincere message of welcome into your circle.
Create a warm environment around yourself, use your smile to warm everybody’s heart. When you meet somebody, shall you bring your concerns and fears to that person? or shall you bring your joy? The best memories are made when you are laughing or remember a funny episode in your life.
The other day I went in a very large networking meeting at one of the top law firms in Richmond, I was late, running, was winter and I had my coat, my boots, my bag, everybody very fancy, and me with all this energy. I am always cold so I wear a big coat, which I had to take off as this was one of these meetings that you need to look your best to be noticed. Well surely I was noticed, I hit the tall guy behind me with my coat and my bag, I turned around and laughing I told him how sorry I was, he thought was funny, that is how I met Dave Brat, the congressman, the guy next to him started laughing as well, and when I spoke he noticed that I had an accent and I told him I was Portuguese, he had worked for many years with Portugal and Brazil so he started talking to me in Portuguese, we laughed, that is how I met the managing partner of NY life that is one of our members. Neither of these men will have forget me because a little accident became a warm door opening for both.
So, whatever tools you can use, remember – create warmth around you all the time, your smile, your eyes, your clothing – do never create cold and grayness, always warmth and energy.
Networking Tip- Networking is the vehicle for developing relationships that ultimately will translate into transactions or successful relationships.
-So, create a list of all your contacts in a spreadsheet that eventually you can use to send out information about your business to all your contacts or tell them about something that is happening in your area. Ask for their permission to put them in your mailing list, like that you can contact them safely by email.
If you become members of Network Doctor, you can create an email for your specific list and we will blast it out for you free of charge. Let’s say you are an insurance broker, or a real estate broker and things are changing so fast in your industry, new types of insurance, innovative ideas, all that can be send out for you free of charge.
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