If you have made it your New Year’s resolution to network more in the coming year, only 8% of you actually achieve your goal. We’d like to increase that percentage by helping you love and commit to networking.
Every day is a good day to make a resolution. December just happens to be the month most of us evaluate our past year and set new goals for the coming year. According to StatisticBrain.com and The Journal of Clinical Psychology, 45% of Americans make New Year’s resolutions and 24% fail at their resolutions.
If you’ve decided “this is going to be the year I hit the networking circuit hard to grow my business,” the most important factor in your success will be to ENJOY the networking process. If you enjoy networking, it will be easy to commit to it. If you don’t enjoy it, you are more likely to fall into the 24% of those who fail.
To help you in your journey to success, take a look at these 4 Ways to Commit to Your Networking Resolutions to Grow Your Business.
- Find the Right Group – There are countless networking events all over the United States every day as can be found via www.Places2Network.com and www.Meetup.com. But not every group will be a good fit for you and it is important to shop for one that suits your style, personality and shares your same philosophy. You might know a group is a good fit for you as early as your first visit or it may take up to 3 visits. But don’t force yourself to network where you don’t feel comfortable. That’s a drag and will be hard to make yourself “show up.” Nip it in the bud and as soon as you know a group isn’t the right for you, move on. You will have greater success when you choose a group you look forward to visiting.
- Make Friends – When presented the choice to spend time with family, friends, acquaintances or strangers, who would you choose to spend your time with? You likely answered you’d like to spend most of your time with friends and family and spend the least amount of time with strangers. When you network, make it a priority to develop friendships. Networking doesn’t have to be all business talk – it’s far more enjoyable getting to know fellow networkers on a personal level. Having conversations and asking questions that uncover common interests such as athletics, hobbies, children, pets, etc. builds trust and rapport quickly and can lead to friendship. Most professionals prefer networking with friends they look forward to seeing each week.
- Know Your Purpose – Don’t throw the proverbial spaghetti against the wall and hope it sticks. Without a clear purpose, you will spin your wheels on the networking road to nowhere. Know why you are networking. Identify in advance the resources, partners and connections you need to move your business forward. Are you looking for speaking engagements? Or perhaps you need to acquire a skill. Know exactly who you want to meet to further your goals and ask for introductions. Be sure to facilitate introductions for others as well.
- Have a Positive Attitude – Years ago, I used to say “I’m terrible at remembering people’s names.” I consciously stopped saying and even thinking this and replaced it with “I am GREAT at remembering names” and presto… over time, I became better at remembering names. It’s that simple. If you are thinking or saying how much you dislike networking, how will it be possible to enjoy it let alone love and commit to it? Have a positive attitude about networking. Here are more networking tips that might interest you.
Networking is here to stay – it’s been around for a very long time and is a proven and effective way to grow your business. It will be easier to commit to networking when you enjoy your time, make friends, have a clear purpose and a positive attitude about the process.
What would you add to this list? Let me know with a comment below.
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