Networks are intricate things of beauty. They are so elaborate and complex that one has to wonder what purpose they serve. The people, who know the answer to this question, do know the power of networking. We often wonder that why some intelligent and qualified people fall behind those who are effective communicators and have outgoing personalities.
The answer is that these individuals are master networkers. Great networkers make great leaders because they have unlocked the potential of networking in their busy lives. They have realized that networking is a life skill, not just something you do when you want something. To understand the power of networking you just need to know the answer to three simple questions discussed below.
1) Why we are embedded in networks and how do they affect us?
First we need to understand that we do not live in a small world. We keep passing unseen through little moments of other people’s lives. Everything we do or say tends to ripple through our friends, friends’ friends, friends’ friends’ friends and so on. With the advent of virtual networking in this super-modern age, our boundaries have even expanded beyond our imaginations. Everybody has an effect on every other even for small things like what you eat, where you go, etc.
2) How do networks form and who forms them?
Great networkers have created simple systems that enable them to connect with others, stay connected and create valuable lifetime connections. Great networkers are not born, they are created. It need not be a complex process. Anyone can improve their networking skills, it is open to everyone. There are some basic principles of networking. Great networkers make heart-to-heart connections. They are totally focused on the person in front of them. They listen with their hearts and ears open. The basic philosophy of great networkers is to treat everyone the way they would like to be treated. Some more strategies for professional networking can be mastered as well like – preparing a plan, using social networking sites, involving in social events, etc. All you have to do is start ethically.
3) How do networks work for us?
If you want to be more influential, just develop some unique traits in you. Improve your conversation & listening skills. Remember people by their names. Give recognition and empower people around you. Share your knowledge and ideas with them. Act as a leader and role model for others. Develop emotional relationships with others – wish them on their birthdays, their wedding anniversaries, etc. Have knowledge of broad areas and be a master in one or two things, which you can use to form special interest groups and hence can increase your network.
Barak Obama won the US presidency due to his campaign’s networking. Home based, cash strapped entrepreneurs become successful businessmen by following a simple philosophy of networking that a successful business is not about what you know, but it is about who you know. They convert their contacts into their prospective clients. In this technology driven world, networking skills are inevitable to achieve success. Hence I wish you Happy Networking!!!