Here are ten of 101 ways Melissa G. Wilson suggests to help you become much more successful, no matter what the economy is (and isn’t) doing. They are especially helpful during tough times. Wilson is certain you will benefit from the strategies, based on decades of research and development as well as success and failure, “the joy of victory and the agony of defeat.” They’re practical; they’re easy; they can be implemented immediately and quickly; and best of all, Wilson asserts, “They really work!”
To check out her website and all 101 “ways,” please click here.
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1. Become a Networlder. A Networlder, unlike a networker, has 10 or fewer key people they consider partners. These partners are participants in regular exchanges of emotional support, information, knowledge, promotional support, as well as leads and referrals for new business or career opportunities. The focus of Networlding is on mutually beneficial exchanges with like-minded and like-valued people. The great thing about Networlding partnerships is that they are fun and get results three to five times as fast as traditional networking relationships.
2. Create a Primary Circle. We all have networks. We just don’t necessarily realize it, and we spend most of our time with a few people. Networlding is about becoming aware of our network and consciously creating exchanges with a few people who become our Networlding partners in a primary circle. Social science research states that we can’t communicate regularly with more than 15 people. Primary circles, therefore, we have found, are no larger than 10 people.
3. Initially, you only need one Networlding partner in your Primary Circle. In an extensive study we did with 200 executives, we discovered that the majority of people connect with only five Networlding partners once a month, every month. This means that even one person with whom you share similar or complementary values and who is ready, willing and able to become a Networlding partner, can create a whole new world of opportunities for you and you for them.
4. Find Networlding influencers for your Primary Circle. We define Networlding influencers as people who know how to influence and are ready, willing and able to do so for you and others with whom they Networld. For example, you might know people who are in your industry who are highly influential but are not Networlding influencers because they keep their power to themselves.
5. Put others in Secondary and Tertiary Circles. Again, whether you consciously do this or not, some people will fall into your secondary or tertiary circles. People who might go in a secondary circle are those who are not, right now, ready, willing or able to exchange with you once a month. These are people, however, with whom
you should stay in contact. Tertiary circles are for almost everyone else, because you never know who might become a good partner later and vice versa.
6. Become a Networlding influencer. You can be someone who is not at the top of your field, but because you are willing to practice influencing—connecting people together who have not yet met but who should meet, you can quickly become a top influencer, creating many opportunities for yourself.
7. Spend 80 percent of your relationship building time with your Primary Circle. We know this is counterintuitive but once you have found those 10 or fewer great Networlding partners, spend the majority of your time focused on your partners and your “collective” gain. This will make all the difference in achieving better business opportunities, faster.
8. Treat each person you meet with uncompromising respect. Networlders are zealots of respect and integrity. They are like the knights in King Arthur’s Roundtable. They care about creating relationships of honor.
9. Be proactive rather than reactive. Reactive people wait for a request to refer someone; proactive people are out there creating opportunities for you. These are people who will put you in a primary position in their networks and will actively work to find you new opportunities. Do the same for them.
10. Follow-up promptly after face-to-face meetings. Email or call quality contacts you meet at networking gatherings promptly after an event to remind them of your initial meeting. Let them know you enjoyed meeting them. Focus on the appreciation you have for the original meeting and mention that you would like to stay connected. This is not a time to “sell” your services or products, but rather, a time to grow and deepen the connection around the relationship.
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Melissa G. Wilson is one of the world’s leading experts on the development of individual and community networks as a means of growing and accelerating brand loyalty inside and outside organizations. For more than a decade Melissa’s organization, Networlding, has provided exceptionally successful viral and relationship marketing programs for organizations like AT&T, CNA, Motorola, and Disney.