It has been said that business is all about whom you know, and that saying has proven to be true. Nepotism and favoritism are indeed frowned upon — but as a business owner, it is easier to trust someone you already know, even if they are less eligible.
Foster the right connections.
It can get frustrated by trying to get some experience in the first place. Having the right contacts will give you a chance to interview for your dream work. Having people, you know or a person in a higher position could help you get the money you need to get started.
The right contacts could help you form a relationship that would change the trajectory of your entire business for much better, or the right connections might help you find a buyer for your firm, leaving you with enough cash to start the next one.
Start building now.
You are not only getting the links as soon as you jump into the business world, however. You need to reinforce, develop, and enhance your network. A strong network is vital if you are an entrepreneur or intend to be an entrepreneur. While you might already have some links with family and friends, a business network should be made up of many more than that. It should be made up of all sorts of people of varied backgrounds and experiences.
Enhance and strengthen your network.
When improving and strengthening your business network, it is essential to note that it is not just about knowing people. It is about communicating with them. You may have numerous Facebook friends, but are you friends with all of them?
If you were presented with the chance, would you like to invest with the kid you sat next to in the Psychology class but never hung out with outside the school? Maybe depending on the circumstances — but if you had to choose between a few different choices, you would probably be more likely to invest in somebody you knew and trusted, right?
…meaning your business network.
If your entrepreneurial network is not where you would like it to be, do not worry. You should always develop and enhance your network as you continue to expand, and networking is likely never to stop. However, if you want to concentrate on enhancing and developing your network sooner than later, here are six useful tips to help you do just that.
1. Join online communities.
With the Internet, networking is easier and quicker than ever before. There are online communities dedicated to helping people communicate and network. However, you can go beyond that and enter online forums that discuss topics in your niche or area of expertise. You do not have to restrict everything to companies, either. You will enter groups for items that you also have a personal interest in. As stated, the network should be broad so that you do not have to concentrate exclusively on the professional side of things. Be prepared for that.
2. Be prepared, always!
Before you go to events or initiate a discussion, make sure you are prepared. Have your business cards tucked into your pocket, and know what you want to say about your business if the opportunity arises. If you try to wing it, you may find yourself fumbling or taking too much of the conversation.
Networking is not only about you; it is about communicating and learning about the other person, too. You can pitch what you have to sell, but you might miss some valuable advice from someone whom first-hand learned some entrepreneurial lessons if you do not listen.
3. Take part in social events.
There is nothing like a night out to clear your mind and give you a break from the workplace, but there is nothing like a night out to help you make connections and develop your entrepreneurial network. Attending social activities is a perfect way to communicate with others and build up your network while having a bit of fun. Some activities are planned precisely to help people network, while other events are just some fun parties that turn into networking opportunities.
Tools such as the SELECT card will give you access to private events such as cocktail hours, rooftop parties, gallery openings, menu tastings, and more. Using being a SELECT member is a perfect way to determine what is going on in your area to attend and make some connections.
4. Get active in your community.
Getting active in your community will allow you to volunteer and engage in activities to connect with other local businesses and leaders. It is also a smart way to get your name out there so that people know you and what you did before you got the chance to meet them. Not only is it going to help you make friends, but serving the community is a beautiful thing to do.
5. Start talking to everybody.
This may be awkward, mainly if you are a more introverted person. Talking to others, however, is a perfect way to extend and develop your entrepreneurial network. You may find that the guy you are behind in a long checkout line knows more about content marketing than the expert you have spoken to before.
When talking to people, maybe to develop your network, do not concentrate on or focus the conversation on you, your business, or networking. The best relations are those that are genuine and focused on friendship. Avoid approaching people to pitch to them — you should not even intend to speak to them about business. Approach them to make a connection and let the networking happen from there.
6. Follow up and get in touch with your contacts.
The aim of networking is not to obtain as many business connections and contacts as possible to connect and establish relationships. Follow-up conversations or reach out to check-in connections will go a long way towards cultivating those relationships and making them last longer, which is sure to be a great help along the way.