How do you feel when you think about networking? Excited? Nervous? Feel like it's a trap?
Let's think of networking in an alternative way and see how we can then use the new approach to reframe the way we network.
Step 1: Know Your Archetypes
There are all different types of networkers out there. Some will optimize for the common good, others will behave exactly as they are treated. Acknowledge that different types exist, learn to identify them and feel free to simply have a cordial conversation and move on to the next person.
Step 2: Understand the Theory of Networking
Key Points of Networking
*A Place of Service
*Reframe your Role
*Play a long game
*Work as a team
Step 3: Put it into Practice
Be a great host! You don't have to own the whole room at the whole time. Pick a person and own that one conversation. Create the ever expanding circle.
Ask Compelling Questions! Questions are far more powerful than answers. Instead of asking the simple what is your name or where do you work? Ask someone what is the best thing that has happened to them this week? Or tell me about an idea that you are really excited about? Ask questions to find out who the person is, not how you can use them.
Build trust, comfort and social capital with one another.