Networking skills is an important skill you need as a leader. I’ve sure you’ve heard of this saying before, that it’s not about what you know, but more importantly who you know.
The Chinese call it guanxi or ‘relationship’ in Chinese. The Chinese have a great value of relationships and they value it above their business.
They are very hospitable people and they would go all the way to ensure that a guest feels fully at home with them.
Similarly, you must have these same skills to build a quality network of people; having good networking skills do not mean you have stacks and stacks of name cards of people from all industries.
It means you have a good, strong network of people who have a great relationship with you; be it business or personal.
Many times when I am running my organization, I find that I don’t have all the contacts for my organizational training, suppliers and collaborations; but that is when I tap into my network and often, it is the relationship of this network that helps me get things done.
You could be the smartest person around, but ultimately whether you’re in business, running a church or in the workplace; it is often your network of friends that are able to help you achieve your goals.
Now you shouldn’t start thinking that your network is to help you and you alone achieve your own personal goals. In the same way a network benefits you, you must also go out to help people in your network achieve their goals too.
It’s a give and take relationship and most because no man is an island.
Invest in people in your network
In the same way you need to invest in the people around you; you also need to invest in the people in your network. Remember, the attitude you must adopt if you want a strong network is that you must give. Your attitude must be that of a giver, not a taker from this community.
It is more blessed to give than to receive. You will find fulfilment in your life when you live your day giving to people around you instead of thinking of ways of taking from them.
Don’t worry about what benefits you can derive from them; if you sow into these people’s lives, in time you will reap.
Most importantly is that you adopt an attitude of giving to your network.
Constantly add value to your network
What are the ways you can add value to your network of friends?
If you are a real estate agent; how about sending emails to your friends regularly about the prices and changes in values of houses and any updates in the real estate industry?
If you work in the finance industry, you could tell your friends about the latest happenings in the investing and trading market.
Or simply, you could be the person that constantly sends interesting emails to your friends; could be the joke of the day or something.
While all these things might seem small, but in reality they put you on top of your friend’s minds. Who will they approach should they need advice on real estate information? Investing trends?
I hope you’re beginning to see the value in this personal branding through your network.
Always carry your name cards around
I have this bad habit of leaving my name cards at home; and the thing about it is that you’ll find that the times that you need it the most are the times you’re not holding on to any of your cards.
Do keep a name card holder with a small stack of your own cards so that you can easily pass it on to someone.
They say out of sight, out of mind. Your name card will help your new acquaintances remember you better.
Keep them handy and at reach.
Time Management: Five simple steps for ultimate time management
Time management skills are extremely important to you as a leader. Learn five simple steps you can use for great time management for your life!
Writing Skills: Influencing with the written word
Good Writing skills are very useful for you in your leadership journey. Besides the spoken word, the written word is probably one of the most powerful influencers of the world today.
Interview Skills: The essential components of an interview process
Great interview skills are an amazing asset you can have in your arsenal of skill sets; this is because people are an important asset and you cannot afford to hire anyone less than the best.
Public Speaking Skills: Managing the fear of speaking
As a leader, you must be ready to do a lot of public speaking in front of groups, audiences and even crowds. No matter how fearful public speaking is, you must master the art of public speaking so that you can inspire, motivate and transform.
Assertiveness Skills: Learning to speak your mind
Assertiveness skills are something you have to possess as a leader. How can you be assertive, get your point through with effectiveness without being pushy and over aggressive?
Networking Skills: Building your people network
Networking skills is a good leadership skill you need. Ultimately, it’s not about what you know, but more importantly who you know. Learn how you can build a quality network of not just acquaintances, but friends.
Organization Skills: Getting Your Life in Order
Organization skills are part of the self-discipline you require as a leader. An organized person goes through the day with a sense of purpose, never missing a beat and his mind always focused on something.
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