Answer True or False for each of these statements:
1. If I make a good first impression, my contacts will stay in touch with me.
False. It takes 6-8 interactions for people to remember you and for you to “register” on their radar screen. Even if you make a great impression when you meet someone, it’s rare that they would stay in touch with you, without your follow up. It’s important to stay in touch and continue to get to know them and to teach them what you do and what types of leads/resources you are looking for. It’s equaly important to continue to get to know them, and to learn more about their strengths and networking needs.
2. I only need to focus on face to face networking.
False. You need to use social media in addition to face-to-face in order to build therelationships. With the average American having 250 business contacts, it’s virtually impossible to stay in touch and develop relationships with everyone. LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitterare excellent ways to stay in touch and get better acqauinted.
3. If you appeal to a potential contact’s need to feel important by asking for advice and help, you’ll surely land an appointment.
True and False! People in general are good, and are willing to help, but more importantly: Don’t kid yourself that they are sitting around waiting for job searchers to call and ask for help on their marketing plans. It’s a two-way street. GIVE them a WIIFM for what you can do for them. People are networking more these days. There are only so many hours in a day. So, you can’t just say “Fred suggested that we meet.” Fred can give you an intro, but you have to give your contact a WIIFM (What’s In It For Me) for WHY should they take their time to meet with you/what you can do for them.
4. I’ve got job security, so I don’t need to network.
False. Information has never changed faster, so to stay up on the latest information, trends and best pratices and to succeed in your job, you need to leverage your face-to-face and social networks. Old School: Networking is a necessary evil for job seekers. New School: Networking is the way to get an edge and stay current on the latest information.
5. Talk about your personal life, when networking; don’t always keep conversations strictly business-related.
True. We’re all multi-faceted, people are drawn to those that have similar interests. So ask people what they like to do when they are not working. Share your latest hobbies and ambitions. It’s a way to show people what you are all about and you may even make a new friend or exercise partner.
How did you do? Did you get all 5 right?
If you did, jot me a note in the comment form on this blog, along with your name and I’ll enter your name in a drawing for a free book, Make Your Contacts Count.