This article by Barb Girson showed up in my email this week and I love it. It’s geared towards “sales people” but pertains to those who are networking for their careers as well. After all, what else are you doing in a job search but “marketing” or “selling” your skills and experience?
I encourage each of you to go and read the original article, but here are my thoughts on it:
Barb states that there are three issues that plague someone while networking:
1. Fear of Being PUSHY
2. Plagued by Perfection
3. The Pessimism of Possibly Hearing NO
And oh, isn’t she right? It really is FEAR that holds from success!
I want to share with you what I tell everyone.
Networking is not about you.
Think about that “natural” networker out there that you know. And I can promise you that what makes them most successful is that their focus is not on themselves. They are deeply listening, and focusing on the needs to whom they are speaking.
Doesn’t that take the pressure off? You don’t have to speak perfectly, give the perfect pitch, or worry if you offer something and they say no. Because it’s not about you.
Networking is not about closing the deal, it’s about building the relationship.
If you’re working on building the relationship, then being too pushy isn’t really possible. Though I love Barb’s tip:
As an introvert, you may have the desire to speak to the bank teller or the person at a luncheon; however by the time you work up the courage to assert yourself, and figure out what to say…the opportunity is gone. To increase your effectiveness, turn up the volume and be ready to converse. … As an extrovert, you may drive people away with your strong conviction, enthusiasm and zeal. In order to increase your effectiveness, turn down the volume to connect with others.
Do you recognize some of these issues in yourself? Let me know so I can help you push through and become the Power Networker you’re ready to be!