... is a quick tip ezine for Managers who believe in "Results Derived from Within"
Written by: Vickie Bevenour, a Professional Certified Coach, PCC
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2014: Do You Know How to Network?
A friend of mine, Wendy had been out of work for almost three years and I just heard that she has gotten a new job. Now, to be honest, Wendy is smart, savvy and a great networker, so one would ask what took so long? The answer is that she took her time to do some investigation of other careers that she had always thought about pursuing. Much of her investigation was conducted through networking (did I mention that she was smart?). Once her due diligence was completed Wendy decided to stay in her same field, high impact technology sales and got her new job, but the story here is how she got the new job...
Everyone knew that she had been looking for work. She had turned over many rocks and had talked to everyone that she knew and everyone to whom she had been introduced. Wendy's mantra was "tell everyone your story". Then one weekend, she and her husband were at a local sporting event and saw a fellow woman golfer that she had known casually during rounds of golf. Not to be shy, Wendy started telling her golfing buddy about her job search. Low and behold, this person ran a significant department in one of the Research Triangle's most high impact industries...and in two months Wendy was at her first day of work. Wendy still had to prepare for and do well with the interviewing process, but her contact was able to get her name in front of the hiring manager. This is what networking is all about.
This story reminded me of the power of networking and the fact that the old adage is so true; it is not what you know but who you know. So for those of you who have been thinking about making a job shift or a career change, there is no time like the present to get out there and network. To that end, I have reprinted below a newsletter from October 2011 on how to network. I sincerely hope that it teaches you a new twist on networking and inspires you to get out there and talk with others...even at a sporting event; you never know where the conversation can lead...
October 2011 Do you Know How to Network?
Whenever I broach the subject of networking, if people are honest, they always have the same reaction...."I am not sure how to go about networking" My response is always the same, "Just like any other business project, that you begin, you need to have a Goal and a Plan".
Individuals network for all different reasons and for many different goals, which means that there are many ways to network. For purposes of this discussion, I would like to focus on the type of networking where your goal is to seek information and/or to make a connection.
Let's suppose that you have been working at the same organization of over five years. You have had progressive jobs, each with more success. But.......you really do not know where your next step should be. Perhaps it could be within your current organization, or in a totally new function, area or even company. Chances are that you do not have enough facts to even begin to make a plan (you might have a lot of hearsay or organizational gossip but little facts). In this case you are looking to begin a networking project of researching to get more information and make connections. In this situation I would suggest the following as a networking plan:
Make a list of ten people that you believe have information that could be helpful. Ask each of these individuals for 30 minutes of their time. Create an agenda that looks like this:
Ten minutes brainstorming. Asking the person to brainstorm with you will begin to tap into their knowledge. Truly brainstorm....that means that you do not say anything except "that's good" or "what else" for a full ten minutes. The reason is if you start talking about point number four, you will never get to point number twenty.
Making a plan and a goal for your networking meetings will make you a great networker and connector of people. Do not forget that networking is a two way street and you always need to ask the person if there is anything that you can do for them. Congratulations, by taking this structured approach towards networking you are deriving results from within.
*To review any of these past newsletters, please visit the Newsletter section of www.CoachVickie.com
Certified Coach and a member of the International Coach Federation
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