George and Mary-Lynn

Take the Work Out of Networking

By Bigg Success Staff
01-07-08

Career Builders

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All work and no play make Jack a dull boy, right? What if you approached networking more as play … and less as work? Two excellent posts on networking recently caught our attention:

Networking Rx by Barbara Safani, writing for Career Hub.

Do You Make These Networking Mistakes in Your Job Search? by Liz Lynch, The Stealth Networker.

Safani’s post builds on Lynch’s, which was inspired by an article in The Wall Street Journal by Joann Lublin, entitled How to Network Without Sabotaging Your Own Job Hunt. Now that we’ve given everyone the credit they deserve, let’s get back to netplaying … oops … we mean networking!

Don’t start networking when you need something. It’s too late.
There’s an old saying about borrowing money – bankers are happy to give you money so long as you can prove you don’t need it. Can’t the same thing be said about networking?

It’s claimed that animals smell fear. Humans “smell” insincerity. When you badly need something, like a job, you may unconsciously put off a bad vibe. So everything you say and do communicates your weakness. Desperation never sells.

Networking should be fun!
Don’t dread networking – it should be fun, because people like to have fun. Embrace that and have fun with them while you get to know them. That’s all networking is, right?

Make it a part of your daily life. Everywhere you go, everything you do, is an opportunity to meet people. Go out to meet people and have some fun doing so. Doesn’t seem so bad then, does it?

Remember that you’re talking to a human being.
That person you just met has feelings. They have insecurities. They’re proud of their accomplishments. They have interests. Get to know them, genuinely. Sometimes you’ll hit it off … sometimes you won’t.

Treat each person you meet as a real, flesh-and-blood human being, rather than a cog in your machine. Focus on building relationships, without worrying about whether it’s going to help you or not. You may not find what you’re looking for right now, but then again … you never know!

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Related posts:

Mingle Bells: Networking tips for your next party.

Don’t Shy Away From Networking

Network Your Way To Your Next Job

(Image of lions by tambako the Jaguar, CC 2.0)

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