Tuesday, July 31, 2007

66 Tips For Better Networking - #21

Route 66 - The Journey Toward Success

Be A Resource For Others

There are people who are just plain wrong about what networking "is" and what networking "is not". Some misguided souls think that networking is all about going to parties, seminars and other business events and trading business cards. They somehow think that meeting people makes them instant friends and that these newly found compadres will run home and instantly begin to refer business. Alas, these folks get no value from their network and instantly refute the whole concept of building a network.

I meet people all the time who have soured on the importance of cultivating business relationships. These "anti-networking evangelists" are very opinionated and love to pontificate that networking is a bunch of crap. They have millions of theories about why it does not work, and love to put down those who embrace the practice. The funny part is that I have never met a really unselfish "giver" who holds these negative feeling. You know why? Because givers get!

Those who make it a priority to be a resource to others that they meet are showered with opportunities from their network of personal and professional contacts. People who are constantly looking for ways to assist others discover that their contacts want to return the favor. Over the long haul those who are a resource will benefit from their powerful network.

The next time you focus on your networking efforts do not think: "what can these people do for me"....instead think "what can I do for these people" (thank you John F. Kennedy!). If you meet someone in a business situation and try to figure out how you can get business from them, you are much less likely to ever gain anything of value. However, if you make a new contact and ponder what effect you can have to make their life better, they will recognize you as an important person with whom they will want to get to know better.

Too often in business we get self-centered. Our performance goals, set up by our companies, make everyone focus on their immediate personal needs. Lawyers only seem to care about their personal billable hour goal, sales professionals worry about meeting quota, entrepreneurs grind on company growth, public company executives concentrate on the stock price, etc...

There are few business situations where we are conditioned to unselfishly focus on the good of others without a direct payoff. However, what goes around does come around, and finding ways to be a resource for others will deliver dividends. Try it. You will be amazed at how your life will change when others discover you are the "Go To Person" who will help them meet their dreams.
Be a resource for others and you will be rewarded!

Have A Great Day.



Anonymous said...

The more you give, the more you receive. That's my motto. You feel good when you give too. When I refer my realtor, for instance, I'm happy to recommend such a quality person that I know the recipient will gain from as well.

Anonymous said...

Great post Thom....this is absolutely one of the keys to networking...giving to others.

The first thing I do after meeting someone is to drop them a note to ask how I can help...this usually confuses most people since they are usually asked for things (like jobs, orders, etc).