For me, 2020 was my year to ‘formally’ network. I know, I know I was totally late to the party. I am sure like many I have tried lots of networking groups over the years, but it is time consuming, or it can be if you are doing it right. Time was my barrier to committing to a regular ‘formal’ network. Now with all things virtual, it has really changed the game for me.
You are maybe curious why I have made a point of referring to ‘formal’ networking. The ‘formal’ part for me is referring to an organised networking event not all the other times you are networking and do not even (often) realise it. It maybe on social media commenting and interacting, engaging with online groups, attending meet ups for your interests or hobbies, networking is what so many of us do without even realising.
Networking, for me, is all about showing up, being consistent and persevering. It is so easy to do if you are part of the right networking group.
Networking can come in lots of shapes and sizes and not all networking works for everyone.
Check out 10 Reasons Why Networking Is Essential at Forbes.
Finding the right networking group is not always that easy, it can take time. The 5 questions I ask myself and challenge myself with are:
- Why am I doing it?
- Can I commit to the frequency and/or length of the event?
- Is the business benefit worth it?
- Are the other members of the group my ideal client (or do they know my ideal client)?
- Can I help the other members (would I want to get to know them and feel comfortable recommending them (when it’s right of course) to my network?
Think about those 5 questions and think about where & who you are networking with and you may just find that you need to shift things up a gear.
I network with purpose. I know the cost to show up and the cost of not showing up. Do you?
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