Networking can be a prospective and perpetual business opportunity if you are conscious of not making these mistakes.
- Hear me First
Fact – When you’re networking, be sure to listen to what others have to say. People are more likely to be helpful if they feel like their advice is being heard. Nobody wants to hear about how much you already know – they want to feel like their input is valued.
- My Time Vs Your Time
Fact – At a networking event, it’s important to remember that everyone there is looking to mingle and network. If you’re networking over the phone or by email, try to put yourself in the other person’s shoes and understand that they have a life that extends beyond just speaking with you.
- Being aggressively persistent
Fact – If someone tells you that there are no current openings at their company, don’t give up just yet. Take a minute or two to ask follow-up questions like, “What are the chances of future possibilities? Can you recommend anyone else in the industry who might have something? Any thoughts on How I should proceed?” Your persistence is proof of your interest in the opportunity but shows your persistence subtly. and this may help the people you’re networking with think multidimensional how they might help, which otherwise they would just avoid.
- Let’s close a deal
Fact – Networking is an important part of any industry because it allows you to develop relationships with other professionals. With that being said, it’s crucial to remember that when you’re first starting out or if you’re inexperienced in the workforce, you shouldn’t ask people for jobs or referrals right away. It’s natural to be eager but approaching people in this way could hinder your opportunities. Instead, focus on getting to know the person and building a relationship with them first. This way, when the time comes that you do need a referral or some help finding a job, they’ll be more likely to be willing to help you out because they’ll know and trust you.
- I will judge and then initiate conversations
Fact – It’s important not to prejudge people as you never know who they might know or be able to connect you with. Some of the best referrals come from people you might not expect. We’ve all heard the saying “don’t judge a book by its cover” but many of us still do it. Instead, give people time and your full attention. At the same time, not everything that looks good is good so be open-minded with new professional contacts and don’t jump to conclusions.
- Thinking Short-term
Fact – One of the most common mistakes people make when networking is not thinking about the long-term nature of building relationships. It’s important to remember that networking is not just about striking up a quick deal; it’s about developing a connection with someone that can last. When you’re networking, you show think of collaborations and how both parties can benefit from the interaction. You should work on cultivating mutual long-term relationships.
- Networking is Hunting
Effective people know that networking is like farming – it takes time to cultivate relationships. They don’t chase deals or instant sales, and they understand that it takes time to see results from networking. You may attend a networking forum and do business initially, but the real benefits come from maintaining those relationships over time.
- Building your defenses
Fact – Being nervous about meeting new people is perfectly normal. It’s human! Many cultures teach their children to be weary of strangers as a defense mechanism to protect them from harm. However, in today’s globalized business world, it’s better to engage with someone you don’t know. Exploring new business contacts allows you to learn something new; over time, you may even develop long-term business relationships, but this shouldn’t be the only reason you reach out and introduce yourself.
To be successful in networking, you have to be willing to step out of your comfort zone. With a little practice, you’ll find that avoiding common networking mistakes can be one of the best business decisions you’ll ever make.