If you’re anything like the BizDate staff, you also love Marie Forelo. This #GirlBoss, life coach, motivational speaker and author is the host of the web series, Marie T.V.. On her channel she offers a ton of sound advice for life, love and business. In this video she details 8 great tips for networking like a champ.
1. FOCUS ON GIVING VS. GETTING
When it comes to networking, it’s important to think of how you can give back to others, not always about what you’re going to get. Once you do someone a favor, and help them with their professional goals, they will be more inclined to help you down the road!
2. BE PRESENT
Quit your daydreaming! There is nothing worse than having a conversation with someone who is dreaming about Ryan Gosling, or texting on their phone. When you meet up with someone to network, make sure you are super present in the moment. You will make them feel important, and they’ll be more inclined to listen to you as well.
3. LISTEN MORE THAN YOU TALK
“We have two ears and one mouth, so that we can listen more than we speak.” –Epicetus
Like tip number one, you should always go into a networking meeting thinking about how you can give, or help the other person, more than you’re thinking about what you can get. In fact, when you’re listening to someone that you’re looking to network with, you will actually walk away with more valuable insight than you might have initially anticipated.
4. THINK LONG TERM VS. SHORT TERM
Networking is a marathon, not a race. It’s important to focus on building solid relationships that can help you over a long period of time. The best networking happens between two people that have an established friendship. Focus on building a strong relationship with the individual before you even think about how they can help your career goals.
5. DON’T OVER-COMMIT OR FEEL GUILTY
The more you network, the more people you’re going to meet. The bottom line is, you won’t be able to make time for all of them. It’s better to have a clear understanding of that instead of spreading yourself too thin. If you overcommit yourself, you won’t be useful for anyone at all.
6. BE HONEST
Don’t make promises you can’t keep! If you don’t have time to get coffee with someone, or you don’t have an interest in meeting with that person at all, don’t say you will. The pool you network within is smaller than you may think, so don’t get a bad rep of being a flake. Instead, be honest with your intentions.
7. TAKE ACTION IMMEDIATELY
If you’re offering to help someone by sending an email, or making an introduction, do it immediately. Saying that you’ll take care of it later will only add to your workload and add to your stress. Show that you are trustworthy by whipping out your phone on the spot and sending that email or making that introduction immediately.
8. ONLY DO THINGS THAT EXCITE YOU
Networking should be exciting! Only commit to events or meetings that you’re actually looking forward to. If it doesn’t excite you, chances are you won’t get anything out of it anyway.
BizDate is here to help you nail down the connections you need to make networking a successful endeavor. Start meeting people from your school or alma mater that share your interests, and can help you with your professional goals. Download the app here.