“Networking is an investment in your business. It takes time and when done correctly can yield great results for years to come.”Diane Helbig
Networking is an activity whose objective is to expand the network of professional contacts. Thus, business and/or employment opportunities are generated.
- Make your product or service known in a more personal way and in a more relaxed environment, which will give you greater visibility and reputation.
- Create business relationships between companies and potential customers, suppliers or strategic allies.
- Discover new business opportunities among potential partners or investors.
- Acquire greater knowledge about the market environment, competitors, internationalization possibilities, synergies, risks or new opportunities.
- Get new job alternatives by establishing relationships with headhunters or company managers who can recommend you.
Ways to develop Networking:
- Work on your personal brand:
Have a profile on professional social networks like Linkedin, actively participating in it.
For example, adding new contacts, participating in discussion forums, or sharing news, posts, and comments.
- Attend related events:
Attend conferences, workshops, breakfasts or courses and participate proactively in them.
For example, in the presentations or forums, talking to new people after the activities and trying to get that exchange of interesting contact cards. The idea is later to get a private meeting.
- Keep track of contacts:
When they write comments to us on our publications or private emails, reply to all of them and keep those relationships updated.
After attending a networking event, it is advisable to contact those who have left us their card. This is to secure that opportunity and move on to the next meeting.
- Develop social skills:
It is important to know how to actively listen to the opinions of others.
At the same time, you should share your experiences and points of view, introduce yourself and talk to people who are not from your closest circle. Getting out of your comfort zone can help expand your contacts further.
Types of Networking:
All those face-to-face events where you can meet people related to business and the workplace.
For example, cycles of conferences or workshops where, after the presentations, the attendees are spoken to in a more relaxed way.
All those methods where connections are established, through social networks or applications.
For example, in professional social networks like Linkedin, each user’s profile is their resume. Thus, you can see where he works, what he does and what possibilities exist to establish synergies or seek employment or collaborators.
In short, to make a networking event effective on a professional level, the most important thing is to have an open and participatory attitude that allows both expressing ideas and opinions and accepting the points of view of other professionals with kindness and empathy. To have a solid network of contacts is necessary to maintain intermittent communication over time because you never know at what precise moment you will need to pull the agenda.
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