One Very Important Networking No-No

Published: August 11, 2013
By: Faye Hollands

This morning I’m presenting at a corporate off-site on how to boost your career through successful networking.  One of the keys I’ll be sharing is the importance of follow-up when it comes to internal networking, and how to do it well.  One of my pet hates is when people fall short of minding their P’s and Q’s, and unfortunately forgetting to follow-up is one of those things that falls into the bad-manners category.  So if you’re trying to get ahead in your career, here’s what you need to do when it comes to networking…

Bad Networking Manners

It doesn’t matter whether you’re developing your internal or external network, it’s important to build trust in order for those relationships to really flourish.   The problem is, if you only contact someone when you want something it’s highly unlikely they’ll trust you.  So you see,, follow-up and taking the time to nurture your network is crucial if you want your efforts to be rewarded later on down the track.

I know we’re all busy, and it can be hard to fit everything in, but if you fail to follow-up with your new connections you’re simply wasting your time, and theirs – which no-one appreciates.

Thankfully, follow-up can be easy and quick to do, but it’s important to do it well – so here are some examples of good and bad follow-up strategies: –

Good Followup

  • Send an email to say thanks – quick, easy and free! It’s the least you can do…
  • Send a card – this is a great way to stand out from the crowd and be remembered as very few people take the time to post anything these days!
  • Forward on articles of interest – keep yourself front-of-mind by sending any interesting articles or quotes to your new contact, it’ll show you listened to what they’re interested in
  • Introduce new contacts or new employees – be that friendly person who’s a true connector and puts other people in touch, it’s a great quality and will show that you value your network
  • Connect on LinkedIn – just like email, it’s cheap and easy, and should be a given for anyone you meet
  • Invite to new events – if you’re going to an event that you think someone in your network might like, invite them – even if they don’t go they’ll remember you for thinking of them

Bad Followup

  • Contacting months later when you want something – networking is about building relationships, not just taking when you want something.  There’s nothing worse than being pestered by someone who forgot you existed until they needed your help.  Don’t let that be you!
  • Being over-familiar – don’t start stalking your new contact, make sure you calibrate the relationship and don’t over-step the mark
  • Not delivering on promises – if you said you’d connect them with someone or promised to send some information make sure you do
  • No contact at all – it goes without saying that no follow-up is bad follow-up!  Don’t be a time waster, at least say thanks and stay in touch from time to time
  • Spamming – just because you’ve met someone doesn’t mean you can start spamming them with your products, services or needs!  Networking is a lot more than sales.

Great networkers know the value of a strong relationship and make it their goal to keep in touch.  With an organised approach, and just some simple good manners, you can build a professional network that values your association and is happy to help you when needed.

Remember, talk is cheap but action is gold.  So who do you need to drop a line to?  Do it now….

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Written by Faye Hollands – Director at Outshine Consulting

Faye is an accomplished Career Coach, Small Business Coach and Productivity Specialist who has successfully coached countless clients on how to create a career they love, get more done in less time, and achieve personal and professional success.

To receive your FREE MP3 download of Faye’s popular teleseminar ‘How To Create A Career You Love‘ and weekly articles to improve your career, business and time management skills click here.

You can contact Faye on +61 2 8323 4335 or email fayehollands@outshineconsulting.com

Faye Hollands

About Faye Hollands

Faye is an accomplished Career Coach, Small Business Coach and Productivity Specialist who has successfully coached countless clients on how to create a career they love, get more done in less time, and achieve personal and professional success. To receive weekly articles to improve your career, business and time management skills click here or book your Free Focus Session here.

You can contact Faye on +61 2 8323 4335 or email fayehollands@outshineconsulting.com

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