In the chapter I have recently had published in the Adventures in Manifesting book series, I wrote a section titled “Network and Prosper”. In the last couple of weeks I have seen the benefits of networking reveal themselves yet again.
I attended a networking seminar presented by Robyn Henderson from Networking to Win. It was a fantastic session to review the basics of networking and then put them into practice that night to meet new people. I found a great yoga class up here that I never knew existed, set up my first paying client and added another two very interesting people to my network.
Look for The WOW!
The most important lesson I took away from the networking session was to look for the WOW when you meet new people. People are not just what they do for work. It is far more interesting, and easier to remember people (I’ve now found out), when you know their WOW.
What is someone’s WOW? It’s their passions, interests or hobbies. The WOW is what makes an interesting conversation, or it’s an easy conversation starter when you see that person again.
My WOW is business excellence and organizational culture, which sounds rather businesslike, but that is what I’m passionate about. I also love to travel and paint. Some people’s WOW will be related to their line of work and others will not. That evening there was everything from gardening, cooking, singing, yoga (which is how I met my new yoga teacher), wine appreciation, golf, traveling… and the list went on.
The second lesson reinforced for me that night was the importance of consistently maintaining your network. Making connections with people is only the first step. Like healthy eating and regular exercise, it takes commitment to maintain a good network.
Often I will find, usually when things are going great, that I forget to spend that small amount of time each day (or week) to reconnect with people in my network. To overcome this, I now have a calendar reminder to email or call a few key people regularly. I also try to email or txt someone when I come across something that makes me think about them.
To use Robyn’s words:
“Great networkers make heart to heart connections”
Universal Laws of Master Networkers
I also learnt from Robyn that “Master Networkers” understand and live by the following laws:
– Law of reciprocity
– Law of abundance
– Law of giving without expectation
I think these three laws explain networking at its best. When we are not so worried about our competition that we don’t open up, or when we give without expectation or pay it forward, networking becomes fun! The more I connect with new people the more I realise that every individual is unique and interesting, bringing a different element to my network as a whole.
How Do You Maintain Your Network?
I’d love to hear how others maintain and grow their networks.
Image sourced from Master isolated images / FreeDigitalPhotos.net