While most business people might initially tend to see networking events as cumbersome affairs and then disregard it for time or budget constraints, networking really has various short-term and long-term impacts. In fact, business networking, when done right, usually results in increase in knowledge base, resources and opportunities. Business networking is a surefire way to help you find noticeable personal and professional growth.
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1. Build friendships and business support groups
Networking can help you make friends with the right set of like-minded people. Business friends can not only make the process easier for your business, but also mentor you. Quite similar to real life friendships, business friendships are also a two-way relationship. Share personal and business opportunities to create a harmonious relationship favouring growth of both parties involved.
When you network with like-minded people, you increase your chances of building a business support group. This support group can provide you with much-needed advice on business matters. If they belong to the same business filed, their advice based on their own experiences and learnings can help you grow further. However, if they belong to a different business industry, they can still be of help as they can offer a fresh perspective for your problems.
2. Increase opportunities
Networking often leads to better business opportunities. You can tap into their skill sets and experiences to learn and grow more. Besides, if you manage to harbor healthy relationships with the help of your networking skills, these people themselves will want to provide you better opportunities. When they appreciate you, understand the work that you do and are interested to do, they will expose you to other people in the business they know, like and trust.
If your networking leads to LinkedIn endorsements, it increases your professional credibility for a potential employee or client. However, if you network with the wrong set of people and continue to fill your social media handles with your drunken photos and what not, you will certainly not be a preferred choice for an employee or client.
3. Gain access to influencers
Networking helps you get in touch with important influencers in your business field. You might find it harder to do so without the help of a steady and reliable network. Networking often opens doors to various referrals as well. You can then follow up on these referrals or influencers when the time is right.
The trick is to know who your network interacts with. Tap into their contacts and find the best person for you to get in touch with. Feel free to ask questions and seek help within your network. Do it in a professional and cordial manner to notice best results for your personal and professional growth.
So, the next time you receive an invite for a networking event, before turning it down, at least check the guest list and think wisely about how the event might help you. Also, when you decide to attend an event, do not restrict yourself to a corner space and stay to yourself. Speak to people and find out more about them. Make the most of your next networking event and you never know when you might find just the most perfect person for a business networking.