Read Excerpts

Excerpt #1: “Showing Up”

There’s no substitute for “showing up.” In order to be effective doing face-to-face networking, you’ve got to attend meetings and functions, and then follow up. In addition to showing up you need to attend meetings on a consistent basis. Others get familiar with you and get to know you better when you do that. Since I’m a member of several groups I’ve had the occasion to notice some people are more VISIBLE than others. It could be the quality of their personality, their charisma or their likeability.

Excerpt #2: “Likeability and Genuineness”

It’s a well accepted fact that people want to be around and do business with people they like. A necessary characteristic for success in networking is likeability. Those who smile, are good listeners, and are positive about life tend to have more people in their sphere of influence. It might begin with a handshake and a smile but it goes deeper than that. Why do we like some people more than others? There are a multitude of reasons, and some of them are intangible.

Excerpt #3: “Capitalizing on Commonalities”

When you’re talking to others, whether in a formal networking context or not, you’ll find things in common with them. It could be where you went to school, your ethnicity, playing a particular sport or game, having children the same age, or virtually anything. In order to make connections you need to capitalize on common experiences, interests, and skills. For example, if you find out that someone attended the same university as you did, make sure to let them know you went there also. If the other person shows excitement about this shared experience, then you can ask pertinent questions to determine if the commonalities run deeper, such as having the same professors or major. If you find out there’s strong common ground then you can discuss it more and expand the connection.

Excerpt #4: “The Nexus Concept and Sphere of Influence”

In every group there’s a central, key person referred to as the nexus of the group. For example, a group of friends are all connected through John, the person who knows everyone in the group. As a result, he becomes the leader or center of the group. The others look to him to be the catalyst or motivator. Bob and Paul are part of “John’s group,” but would not usually have contact with each other without John’s initiation. In other words, Bob and Paul are friends through John. In this group John is the nexus. Networking has a similar dynamic.

Excerpt #5: “Social Networking”

Nothing is changing as rapidly and dramatically in relation to networking as social, or online forms of networking such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Plaxo. They have emerged and currently present us with opportunities to network with people in ways other than face to face or telephonic communication. These forms of networking are changing so fast that any comments made about them might be obsolete in less than six months. What we do know about what has become referred to as social media is that it can provide us opportunities to expand our virtual networks exponentially.

Excerpt #6: “Perception of Self vs. The Perceptions of Others”

We all have some type of self-perception. We might see ourselves as handsome or ugly, bright or average in intelligence, introverted or extroverted, agreeable or disagreeable, easy going or difficult. For some people, their self-perception is well developed. However, our self-perception might not match the perception that others have of us. You might say “I don’t see myself as bossy, just organized.” Others might perceive you as bossy. It’s useful to know the various ways others perceive you, especially when those perceptions are negative in nature.