bwagy Networking Theory

August 9th, 2009

I saw a tweet from a fellow business owner a few months back, they had stopped having coffees and networking as they weren’t building any immediate business out of it……. hmmm

Bit stupid to stop networking if you ask me. ย Why? Well…

My theory basically is, no matter what you do, every person you meet at some stage in the next 5 years will either have a need for your service or will hold a conversation with someone who needs your service. ย So no meeting is wasted! (as long as you impress them enough).

Yes this is a long term view – but successful business is built over the long term. ย So don’t fret that every meeting has to turn over dollars; build relationships, think for the long term and it will pay off.

Don’t stop networking because money doesn’t come in straight away, keep at it, it pays off.

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4 Responses to “bwagy Networking Theory”

  1. Nathaniel Flick Says:

    Ben, agreed wholeheartedly. I can compare this directly to my experience as a musician. Once I subbed for one bass player, all the bassists in town (and more importantly the bandleaders) knew they could count on me.

    That word of mouth did more for my playing schedule than any amount of passing out business cards ever did. I got calls years later out of the blue because people knew me and that I was dependable.

    That’s the trick with networking is you not only have to do it, you have to show up when they finally call! But that’s the easy part…

  2. Andrew Weaver Says:

    I couldn’t agree more, Ben.

    Real networking (relationship networking) takes time and the rewards are not always immediately seen. This is why some people get discouraged, but when you network in such a way that you focus on relationships you have to be prepared to work at it.

    Some people consider networking simply meeting people and handing them their business card. I am generalizing a little here, but I really do believe some people think that’s what it’s about. “They’ve got my card, if they need my service they will call.” But will they? Have you invested in a relationship with that person? In my opinion, the people who become discouraged with networking are the people not focused on building real relationships.

  3. Ben Young Says:

    @Nathaniel Thanks for sharing, I’ve found exactly the same, people will call or get in contact often years later.

    @Andrew Nothing worse than those that throw their card at you, or visit a table and give everyone your card. You’re right that has very little (if any) value to me, build a relationship, go from there.’

    Thanks for your comments guys.

  4. Andrea Wong Says:

    I’ve found that around 80% of my business comes from word of mouth and existing contacts. I fully appreciate the power of networking and keeping in touch with people.

    As long as not all of your time is taken up with networking and ‘getting to know you’ meetings, what is the harm in having an occasional coffee to meet new people and to find out more about them?

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