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Top 7 Qualities of a Superstar Networker

By Donna Gunter

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One of the most often overlooked methods of increasing and growing your business is through the power of networking. Networking was definitely the buzzword in the mid-1980's through mid-1990's, and all the hype surrounding it turned many people off. However, I strongly feel that's it's one of the most powerful tools you have at hand for connecting with other people and letting them know what you do and how you might be able to assist them.

Notice that it's netWORKing. It's not netSITTING, or netDRINKING, or netEATING. You may or may not have a formal networking group in your area. Even if that option is not available to you, join organizations, such as Chambers of Commerce, professional groups, civic groups, etc. and any type of organization to which your target market might belong. Attend community events like business open-houses or neighborhood picnics.

You really need to work the room or your contact list. Never pass up an opportunity to meet someone new. Remember --- if you want to be interesting, be interested. Successful networking is definitely a two-way street. Regardless of whether you get any new clients, you'll have made new business acquaintances.

Here are the top seven qualities I believe are present in a superstar networker:

  1. Great ATTITUDE. Have a love for people. Increase your attractiveness to others by actively listening and showing a sincere interest in what they have to say.

  2. Strong BELIEF. You must have a strong knowledge of and belief in what you are promoting. If you don't believe in yourself and your business, why would anyone else?

  3. Passion. Do what you love and love what you do. Once others can see that, the money really does follow.

  4. Ability to reach out and touch someone. Look for the groups of three or the single person to talk to at events. It's pretty easy to join in a conversation already in progress of a group of three and get to know them. The single person at an event is just as eager to find someone to talk to as you are--strike up a conversation.

  5. Ability to ask questions. Once upon a time, teenage girls were instructed by their mothers to keep their date talking by asking questions to find out more about him. At the end of the night, they were told their date would find them so irresistible, when in reality, the date had done all the talking. Well, now that we're in the 21st century, that advice seems a bit dated and sexist, but we can borrow the theory and apply it to networking. Let the person with whom you're speaking do the most of the talking. Here's a couple of ways to break the ice:

    • How did you get started in your business/profession? Listen when they tell their story. They have to know that you are truly interested.

    • What do you like most about your job?

    • What is unique about your business?

    • What advice would you give to someone starting a business like yours?

    • What do you see as the newest trends in your business?

    • What was the funniest or strangest thing that happened to you in your business?



  6. Ability to be unique. What makes you different? This is not only a key to successful networking, but will be a key to your business success. Be able to articulate first to yourself and then to others about why someone may want to utilize your services rather than your competitor just down the street.

  7. Ability to always have a gift. Give more than you expect to receive. Remember the Law of Reciprocity--no matter how small, they won't forget it. I'm firmly convinced that those who give receive other gifts in return from others in great abundance.

    BONUS TIPS

    • Organized. Be a true Boy Scout or Girl Scout. Always be ready for every occasion and be organized in your workplace. At a minimum, bring along a pen and lots of business cards for exchange or to write yourself notes for follow-up contacts.


    • Ability to say "thank you" sincerely. How many times have you heard "Let's get together" or "I'll call you" and the contact ends there? Take the initiative! Send a note or give a call. Always make it from the heart.


    • Ability to be real. Most people have their own internal lie detectors and can spot a phony a mile away. Don't activate one--get out of your head and get into your heart! "Do what you love & love what you do. This is easy when you get out of your head and get into your heart."

Today's Top7Business article was submitted by Donna Gunter.
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Source: http://Top7Business.com/?expert=Donna_Gunter

Article Submitted On: February 25, 2000