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Networking Your Way to Success
When it comes to getting what you want, networking can help you get ahead. Networking involves meeting a variety of people in a variety of different circles, learning all about them and allowing them to learn a bit about you. The major benefit of networking, apart from the fact that you will meet a bunch of interesting people, is that when you get involved with networking, opportunities seem to magically open up to you.
When you know people in just about every industry or walk of life, you have an "in" that can help you when you need to tap that industry. By networking, you are essentially building a customized switchboard that can help you fulfill your needs. However, anyone that is involved in networking knows that it is not always easy to get ahead. Here are some tips to help you network more effectively.
There are a large number of networking events that involve bringing people together for the purpose of networking. These events tend to be uncomfortable, as people do not always know what they are going to talk about and many people have a hard time actually talking about themselves.It's important, therefore, that you are genuine when you meet people. Look them in the eye. Ask questions and really do your best to be interested in what they have to say.
Learn About Them
Most people will tell you that if you have a conversation with someone and ask them lots of questions about themselves, they feel important and interesting. When you are networking, it is important to make sure that you are making your conversation partner feel like the most interesting person in the world to you. You can do this by focusing your attention on what they say, rather than outside events. Laugh at their jokes and nod often. Encourage your networking partner to share with you as much as he or she wants to.
The follow-up is the essential ingredient to successful networking. It is important that you actually send an email or a little note to the people you meet. It doesn't have to be long; a simple, "I enjoyed meeting you last night and would love to grab a cup of coffee sometime," is all you need to let people know that you appreciated their conversation. Be prompt with the note and try to include mention of some important things they may have shared with you.
Networking can truly land you in some pretty amazing places. Make sure that you dress appropriately and carry yourself well in order to ensure that you put your best foot forward. Remember: sometimes all it takes to get ahead is who you know and how to make use of your relationship! Networking is the key to success on a great many fronts.