That’s what a client told me. She had hired me to come speak about networking at a women’s leadership conference.
“Men,” she said, “naturally gravitate to talking about business and always exchange business cards.” These were her examples to back up her statement.
While I understood what she was saying, I didn’t agree. What she’s describing is transactional networking.
We’ve all witnessed these kinds of exchanges or experienced them first hand. Standing in one of those tight networking circles at an event and some guy starts handing out his card to everyone.
Suddenly everyone is doing this and it starts to feel like a poker game.
Spray and pray networking isn’t what I teach and it isn’t the kind of networking I think anyone should be doing.
I’ve met men and women who have had this approach, it’s definitely not a style unique to just men.
But women, in particular, tell me that this kind of networking doesn’t feel authentic and is a big turn off when they’re considering where to spend their time and whether to even attend a networking event.
What I encourage my clients to focus on is relationship building and at its core, this is about helping people. Helping by making introductions, sharing resources, and being supportive.
Know any women good at helping? Exactly. These are skills that women, in general, excel at. Yet, they don’t perceive this to be a networking activity.
It doesn’t take a lot of effort to recognize the advantages women have when it comes to building relationships. Very quickly the entrepreneurial women I have worked with have had a mindset shift and begun to see opportunities and possibilities in the world around them – not just at networking events.
Your Challenge For This Week:
Reach out to two former colleagues you were friendly with but have lost touch with since you stopped working together.
Keep the message short and sweet: “Hey, how are you? _______made me think of you. We should find time to catch up.” This could be via email, text, or Facebook private message.
These former colleagues are a great way to broaden and diversify your network because they've likely also moved on to different professional and social circles since you last saw them.
Do this and then hit reply to let me know how it goes!
Business Growth Strategist & Business Coach
As a relationship-based business growth strategist, I work directly with a limited number of self-employed professionals, aka solopreneurs.
WHO YOU ARE:
You want to have a greater impact and increased income. The problem is that there are so many options for how to build your business that you can feel stuck, overwhelmed, and like you’re running out of time.
The reason options are overwhelming is that you’re looking at them as a series of disconnected steps, when to make the most of your time, you need a strategy that connects only the most important and highest impact ones.
You know that if you try to do everything, you’ll accomplish nothing. This means, to achieve your goal, you have to invest in a strategy to put time on your side.
As a relationship-based business growth strategist, I will work with you to design a year-long plan that consists of three 12-week sprints, each followed by 4 weeks of reflection/assessment, rejuvenation/vacation, and strategic planning. This will allow you to sequence your goals, create momentum, and leverage your limited time.
We can build your plan through a half-day strategy session, a coaching engagement, or a mastermind program.
These are not right for everyone; they’re personalized offerings and are priced accordingly.
What might you work on?
In my coaching work with entrepreneurs and solopreneurs, we focus on the areas where you’d like to grow, which may include:
- Creating a strong sales conversation framework
- Building your referral network
- Lead generation through a relationships
- Growing your visibility in your industry
- Increasing your ability to attract the right kind of clients
- Identifying and launching a minimally viable offer
- Breaking through whatever bottleneck is holding you back from getting the results you want and deserve
- Becoming a published author and marketing your book successfully
- Improving your virtual presentation skills
Learn more about the different ways we can work together – deep dive 3-hour session, private 1:1 coaching, and masterminds. I’m excited to support you in reaching or exceeding your goals.
- Connect with me on LinkedIn to see the content I share.
- New to my website? Start here
- Listen to my On the Schmooze podcast – weekly since July 2016.