Patience is a virtue… especially in relation to networking

I went to a networking event last week where the format was speed networking – always great fun! Even better was that I knew almost everyone in the room so when it came to the speed networking I had the chance to have a “catch up“ with lots of people.

Thinking about it later I realised that although someone watching might think I had just been enjoying a pleasant afternoon out of the office in fact, during the two hours at the event I had spoken to:

  • Advertisers – always good to meet “face –to face”
  • Fellow networking group organisers – great to have a chance to talk as at our own events we are always busy organising!
  • Readers – really useful to get feedback from people who get my magazines through their door
  • The father of one of my ex-distributors – nothing like reminiscing about boxes… and boxes of magazines!
  • A business prospect – someone who was interested in advertising with me
  • Someone who might need the services of one of my suppliers

In other words it was that perfect mix of a really lovely social afternoon whilst doing business – which is what business networking is all about.

But of course there is a catch – I didn’t reach this point overnight. I have been networking seriously for eight years now.

Don’t panic I am not suggesting that you need to network for that long before you start to experience positive effects on your business but it does not happen straight away – you need to attend networking events regularly so that people get to know you and your business and most importantly, trust you to a provide a professional service for them.

So if you’ve found a group where you feel comfortable and which you can see could  work for your business get their dates in your diary now so that you ensure you attend regularly…

… because making networking work for your business does take time – but it is really worth the effort!

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