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Networking tips to strengthen your connection

Networking_tips_to_strengthen_your_connectionThe fastest way to expand your network is to connect with someone else’s. In addition to expanding your own network, you can benefit others by connecting your network to theirs. Experts in business networking agree that it is better to have business connections to a variety of networks rather than many connections within a single network. Solicit recommendations from other people in your organization, from your mentors, and from people who are successful in the way you would like to be. 


Using systems such as Facebook or LinkedIn and adding 10 new contacts a month will link you to their contacts, thereby exponentially increasing your business networking efforts. These social media networks can help you keep track of your connections: their successes, career or life changes and their new connections. 


Before connecting with interesting individuals research them on Google, LinkedIn or through mutual acquaintances, to be prepared to make small talk intelligently. Here are 4 follow-up tips to strengthen your networking techniques: 


1) Give a compliment. Make it a habit to follow-up 12-24 hours after meeting the new contact to make sure you stay on top of the other person’s mind. Send a quick email and cite something that was discussed. Give people a compliment when you hear and/or read good things about them and their organization. 


2) Ask a question. An effective way to establish the other person’s importance is to tap into their interests or expertise. Talk in terms of the other person’s interests. Shared interests are the basic building blocks of any relationship. LinkedIn provides a feature where you can ask for recommendations or skill endorsements. You can nurture your network by getting together for coffee, art openings, community events, etc.


3) Refer others. Create business networking opportunities for your contacts as a sure-fire way to build relationships and indicate your willingness to be of service and build your credibility as a person who understands other people’s needs. Bring your network together and facilitate the meeting of your contacts. Get permission from both people before initiating the contact and clearly explain why they will be mutually benefited. 


4) Go the extra mile. Do something unusual that shows your willingness to go an extra mile. Give them a reason to get back to you.  By example, you can refer them a pertinent article on their personal interest or business. 


These lasting, mutually beneficial business connections are sustained through trust and the investment of time and effort to help others. To have more tips on how to build strong relationships and business connections, register to our Dale Carnegie Course: Skills for Success : bit.ly/SkillsForSuccess

 

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Dale Carnegie's book "How to Win Friends and Influence People" is the most influential business book of the twentieth century. Download a free copy of his principles and learn why! These are the same key principles we use in our training and consulting services for professionals and companies of all sizes in all business segments around the world.

 

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