Turn “Socializing” into “Networking”

by | Aug 12, 2010 | Sales Motiviation

By Jeff Beals
Most professionals know they must network in order to achieve long-term business success.  I remember as far back as high school being told by my guidance counselor that I needed to “meet a lot of people and build a network.”  That was great advice back then and even better advice today.
It’s critically important to participate in the public arena and interact with the people who could become your clients, provide you with valuable information or help you further your causes and beliefs.
While they understand the importance of networking, many professionals do a lousy job of it.  It’s easy to show up at an event, grab a drink, eat some free hors d’oeuvres, say “hi” to a couple people, then go home and pat yourself on the back for being involved in the community. 
Unfortunately, that’s not networking.  It’s merely socializing. 
There’s nothing wrong with socializing.  In fact, it’s generally a good thing, but it’s not efficient. In order to convert socializing into networking, you need to have a three-tiered goal planted in your mind before you even enter the venue where networking will take place.
I call it “goal-based networking,” and here’s how it works:
Goal #1
“I will get a direct opportunity”
This could be a new client, an invitation to join a prestigious organization, a job offer, a promise to donate money to your pet cause.  While Goal #1 is ideal, it unfortunately doesn’t happen at most networking events. 
Goal #2
“I will get a solid lead on a direct opportunity”
This is almost as good as the first goal, because it moves you closer to what you really want.  Goal #2 should happen at the vast majority of networking events you attend.  If it doesn’t, you’re not meeting enough people or not asking the right questions.
Goal #3
“I will meet new people and learn valuable information”
This is the bare-bones minimum goal that you should achieve at every single networking event you attend.
Make a commitment to network more and remember to think about these three goals before walking into your next networking event.  Setting these goals consistently over a long period of time will maximize the return from your investments in networking.  That means you increase your public profile, connect with the right people and become that person who always seems to know about business happenings long before your colleagues do.
Jeff Beals delivers presentations to a wide variety of audiences nationwide. Presentations are adapted to fit your organization’s goals and can be keynote speeches (30 to 90 minutes) or workshops (two to four hours) covering the following topics: 
  1. “Self Marketing Power: Branding Yourself as a Business of One”
  2. “Tons of Room at the Top: the Attitude of Success”
  3. “National Signing Day: What All Professionals Can Learn from College Football”
These presentations are energetic, humorous and packed full of valuable information.To discuss booking a presentation, go to JeffBeals.com or call (402) 637-9300.

Jeff Beals helps you find better prospects, close more deals and capture greater market share. He is an international award-winning author, sought-after keynote speaker, and accomplished sales consultant. He delivers compelling speeches and sales-training workshops worldwide. He has spoken in 5 countries and 41 states. A frequent media guest, Jeff has been featured in Investor’s Business Daily, USA Today, Men’s Health, Chicago Tribune and The New York Times.

To discuss booking a presentation, go to JeffBeals.com or send an email to info@jeffbeals.com.

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