THE QUALITY OF NETWORKING
The people factor is one of the most essential parts of our lives, love, work and businesses. As a Professional Personal Branding Coach, every day the importance of keeping relevant people in my circle intensifies. The array of benefits in having a recognized network of friends and professionals in all areas of our lives gets longer by the day.
In years past, networking was limited to an exchange of names and credentials, usually in the form of business cards at high-level seminars, conferences, speaking engagements and sometimes at casual meet-ups. One had to rehearse some grammatically perfect speech and wrap themselves up in strict professional outfits in an attempt to make an impression. I can understand why many of us will go through such troubles! Beginning with the wealth of knowledge one can garner from meaningful conversations, the store of benefits of networking is large. More importantly, nurturing long-lasting relationships with people that can impact your life, work and business should not be underestimated.
Corporate businesses and entrepreneurial innovations are experiencing a shift in culture when it comes to people interactions. Have you thought of new ways to build your network? Do you truly understand the relevance of building your network? In networking is it really about the quantity of people you know or the quality? Some people believe that networking is more of a numbers game than it is a quality game. Social media has also contributed significantly to this idea that it all about numbers. Yes, the numbers do count and they do matter. Yet, I believe that the quality in those numbers play a more pertinent role. What use is a large circle of people who do not have the engagement skill or technical expertise to assist you? Of what use are you as a statistic if you have nothing valuable to offer in someone else’s circle?
The quality of your network gets stronger as both parties understand their roles on what to give and what to take. Beyond the introduction and pleasant conversation, what is needed to establish the quality of your network? The real connections, the ability to work together to solve challenges and taking time to find clarity in understanding your collaboration can be solid foundations on which your networks can be built.
Here are 4 key tips to help you network and nurture your network into a quality hub:
- Real Relationships
Before you attempt to network, understand why and how you are going to network. As you communicate with an individual, pay attention by listening to what they are saying. I can assure you that not everyone you speak to at an event is meant to be in your circle. When you listen and are honest about what it is this person can do for you, and what you can do for them, you will be able to determine whether you can and should continue to build the relationship. Andrew Sobel comments on how to follow up after you have identified the people who should matter to you out of many. “Once you’ve identified your critical few, make sure to keep regular contact, he advises. “These aren’t people you should just send a holiday card to,” he says. “You should be talking two or three times a year. You should know what their interests are and follow up with them around those.”
- The Health of Your Network Is in Your Help
The simple way to value your network and contribute to its quality is to continue to build yourself so you can be resourceful. Many people network simply because they want to have ties with the big people in the game. It is interesting because these big people also need people who can add value to their businesses and life. Offer to help or recommend someone who can when you are unable to. As you contribute so others can move a level up, make sure they are doing same for you!
- Know the People Outside their Positions
The people in your network are simply people before they are whatever titles they have attached to their names. Make time to check up on them even when you don’t need anything. Get to understand what they value, what they like to do outside of work. Trust me, it is a simple and human route to making the most of your relationships.
- Keep Engaging
Any day is a good day to discover new people. Do not limit yourself when the world is waiting for you to explore it. Engage everyone else. There are always new things to learn.
Networking can seem daunting, but with prioritization, excitement and a growth mindset, the return will be worth the investment. When it comes to brand building, there is no substitute for relationship development – Lindsay Nahmiache
Dzigbordi K. Dosoo: The H.E.L.P. Coach
Dzigbordi K. Dosoo is a Personal Impact, Professional Growth and Influence Expert specializing in Humanness, Entrepreneurship, Leadership and Power – H.E.L.P.
A career spanning over two decades, she has established herself as a Certified High Performance Coach, Speaker, Author, Wellness Expert and award-winning Entrepreneur with a clientele ranging from C-Suite Executives, Senior Management, Practitioners and Sales Leaders spanning 3 continents.
She is the Founder of Dzigbordi K. Dosoo (DKD) Holdings; a premier lifestyle business group with brand subsidiaries that include Dzigbordi Consulting Group& Allure Africa.
She is one of the most decorated female entrepreneurs in Ghana having being named “CIMG Marketing Woman of the Year” in 2009; “Top 10 most respected CEOs in Ghana, 2012; Global Heart of Leadership Award and, Women Rising “100 Most Influential Ghanaian Women”, 2017. She has also been featured on CNN.
She can be reached on firstname.lastname@example.org and @dzigbordi across all social media platforms.