I often hear people complaining that they have not got any business from their networking activities. After digging a little further, it soon becomes obvious why… They expect to just turn up and get new business straight away without putting any work in.
To be a successful networker, you need to do more than just turn up. But, what should you do?
Get to know your local business community by attending a number of different networking groups in your area. You will soon start meeting some of the same people at different events. But, take time to get to know people and discover how you can help them. This will benefit you in the future.
Seek people with whom you can form joint-venture relationships
Once you have formed relationships with others in your local business community, you will have a real sense of who has a similar target market to you, yet is not in direct competition. These are the ideal people with whom you should seek to form joint-venture relationships.
Prepare for each event
Think about what you want to say at each event, whether or not you get a formal opportunity to deliver your elevator speech.
Volunteer your time and services
Most networking organisations are run by a small group of members who are always looking for volunteers to help organise and facilitate events. For a VA, this is a great opportunity to demonstrate your skills to all the members.