5 fail-proof tips for athletes to grow their network.
Networking is all about people enjoying people, communicating their passions and connecting with others who share those passions. It’s about listening, finding out what others need and connecting them with people you think can help, without the main motive being your own personal gain. The thing about the word NETWORK is that it has the word WORK in it. It’s not Netchillin, Nettalking, or Nethandshakin. You have to put in some work and not just be superficial.
Everybody loves using the cliche “your network determines your net worth”. Excuse my language but that is a bunch of BullS*hit. I can meet Jay-Z, Bill Gates,Oprah and POTUS tomorrow and get their contact info and then claim they are in my network.
Networking is a skill and in order for athletes to maximize the skills, they must be willing to open up. It is important that we are able to communicate our story and be ourselves. Real networking happens when there is an understanding that everyone in the room brings value. As athletes we come in contact with many successful people but many times we don't maximize the opportunity.
So here are 5 fail-proof ways to really create a network for athletes.
- Have a plan
When you start networking , know exactly what you’re trying to accomplish. Understand what talents, strengths, skill sets and connections you can bring to the table. Write down what you want to talk about. In particular, how you may be able to help other people.
2. Drop Your Ego
People like to get to know you as a person and not you as a diva. Be approachable and likable
3. Be an Influencer
You know a lot of people, and you have a lot of influence. Become the person that is a great connector of people, and they will look at you as an influencer.
4. Follow Up
This is probably the most important tip. If you don't follow up and continue the conversation you basically wasted your time connecting. These are people you can't consider a part of your network if you don't communicate with them on a monthly or bi-monthly basis. You must also reach out to people when you say you will, you won't build any trust if you aren't consistent in following up. But if you do this, people will always keep you in mind. In order to follow up you must get a solid contact information like phone numbers, email addresses, websites and social media handles.
5. Network with other players
One of the biggest missed opportunities is taking for granted the network we have with others players, not only in your sport but in other sports as well. It is so valuable to hear the stories of other athletes and connect to their networks that may be able to help you.
If you want more information about what athletes need to create financial freedom check out my book for free >>>here.
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Brandon Williams is a former NFL Wide-Receiver, and current College Football Analyst, Celebrity Speaker, Success Coach and Author. He’s on the front lines when it comes to educating and motivating pro athletes to create enduring financial freedom.
His book, Millionaire Mindset — 7 Principles Athletes Need For Financial Freedom, is enhanced with essential principles to give aspiring professional athletes, and current professional athletes, the tools to create a blueprint for financial freedom. Brandon’s success formula?
Passion + Purpose = Success