Why Networking Is Crucial To Your Success
Running a business can be a lonely journey at times but if you run a small, online business that loneliness can be multiplied by 100, especially if you don’t have established networks where you can share, support and learn.
Whether you choose to do your networking online or in person, there are loads of opportunities to get out there and create relationships that will help you to foster your business (and potentially your personal life) for years to come. There is certainly no reason to go it alone any longer.
So what are the benefits? There’s many but below are a select few that will convince you the possibilities that come with getting skilled at networking are endless.
Create business (and personal) contacts
Firstly, this is the base level of networking. Of course you want to meet and share with other people in your field of business. The lost art of communication has led us to rely on emails, texts and voice messages but it’s time to take it back. Organise a coffee catch-up, a phone call or a meeting via Skype or Google Hangouts. Use your verbal skills to your advantage and use a more personal approach in connecting with other in your niche… And you might just make a friend along the way.
Get an education
The best thing about surrounding yourself with like-minded people is that you automatically increase your circle of people to learn from. They also often offer workshops, seminars or online courses, which are an easy way to upskill yourself.
Fast-track your professional development
Finding a mentor can be a delicate exercise. They have to be the right fit and be in it for the right reasons so the best place to find one is within a networking group. The support, advice and knowledge from a mentor can be invaluable and your business will definitely be better off for it.
Be more aware of the dynamics within your industry
Staying ‘in the loop’ can be a struggle sometimes so creating a schedule of weekly catch-ups, booking in networking events and organising to attend seminars with friends or colleagues will aid networking as well as your expertise in your niche. It’s amazing what you’ll pick up.
Connecting with other people in your field that aren’t your direct competitors can be a massive boost to your business. By offering something from your business and promoting something from their business, you can double your target market (in places online like our Facebook group). Just be smart about the information you give and what you offer.
Seek new career opportunities
There’s no better way to explore new opportunities than letting everyone know you are looking. And that’s where LinkedIn comes in. Update your profile and say you are ‘Seeking new opportunities’. Then go through and add people in the industry or fields you’d like to work in. Once you’ve done that, explore some relevant groups and start conversation threads with knowledgeable people. You never know what opportunities could come your way.