Move Beyond the Hustle: The Myths of Networking

4 great tips to move you beyond the hype to establishing authentic business relationships

Now that you know the common myths, here are some reinvention strategies and tips that you can use to be more effective moving forward.

Tip #1: Value People.
Everyone you meet has something to offer. Most people tend to engage in what I call “stuck-up networking” – meaning you tend to only talk to those you think are important or worthy of your time.  Sowing seeds into the lives of others opens up doors and leads to key referrals.  You never know where the next fantastic opportunity will come from.

Tip #2: Know Your Brand.
The real key to strategic networking is being able to listen to the needs of others.  From there you strategically respond by sharing relevant information about your brand and your abilities to meet those needs.  The finesse comes in presenting your assets without appearing pushy.

Tip #3: Start slowly.
When you first meet someone, the objective is to get to know that person and learn more about that individual’s business or industry.  The goal is not to get something.  Never start a conversation with someone by saying, “I want to pick your brain.”  That, my friends, is ‘taker’ talk.  Wise networkers give.  Asking for too much too soon is like trying to get married after the first date.  Plus, I do not want my brain “picked” – that sounds traumatic.  I don’t mind sharing insight, but please, no picking!

Tip #4: Be Ready.
Remember, networking is not a onetime event.  You should be ready to connect with people and to find mutual synergies wherever you go.

For additional insight, pick-up your copy of SKIRTS in the Boardroom—it is also available for download on KindleClick here to sign-up for my free ME Unlimited® e-Newsletter featuring daily “Motivate ME” affirmations and reinvention advice, and you can follow me on Twitter for quick tips.

It’s your turn now.  Share your networking tips and faux-pas with us.  I look forward to hearing from you.

Reinvention Strategist™ Marshawn Evans is a former Miss America beauty queen turned Donald Trump Apprentice, turned Georgetown University trained sports & entertainment lawyer who equips the motivated to live without limits.  She is Founder of ME Unlimited, a management consulting and performance strategy firm.

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  • http://N/a Markus Elliott

    This is a very informative article especially for a young Manager like myself. I always wonder why I would get turned down and avoided when I was trying to network. But with this article I fully understand the do’s and dont’s of networking. Hopefully it will help me in my goal of being the store manager of a Lowes Home Improvement Store.

  • http://WriteMyResumeNow.com Ozzie Saunds

    Great article Marshawn,
    Love your advice. I think sometimes people value other people but forget to provide these people of value any added benefit to their lives. So in other words they want something for nothing. They want valuable people to help them advance but sometimes forget that the best way to get people to help you is to provide them with something that they want first. You will advance quicker in life if you wake up every morning thinking how can I make someones life easier today instead of thinking how can I get something I want today.

    Ozzie Saunds
    WriteMyResumeNow.com

  • http://WriteMyResumeNow.com Ozzie Saunds

    Great article Marshawn,Love your advice. I think sometimes people value other people but forget to provide these people of value any added benefit to their lives. So in other words they want something for nothing. They want valuable people to help them advance but sometimes forget that the best way to get people to help you is to provide them with something that they want first. You will advance quicker in life if you wake up every morning thinking how can I make someones life easier today instead of thinking how can I get something I want today.

    Ozzie Saundshttp://www.WriteMyResumeNow.com

  • http://www.stepwiseassociates.com Marsha Haygood

    Great article that reminds people that networking is about establishing relationships and should be about helping others, not for what you can get. People remember those that make them feel good.

    • Claus

      adamBATTAGLIA Posted on whit, your pictures are ubbelievanle. sure, i’m really jealous but also REALLY JEALOUS. congrats on what seems to be a successful trip so far. can’t wait to see the show.

  • C. Wolfe

    Great article Marshawn! The information enclosed within the article is endowed with great intellectual tips for great networking. Networking is an art form-it must be viewed as a process for all parties involved. The end result should be the establishing of solid business relationships that can foster professional growth.

    • Stefani

      The career fair was not aihnytng spectacular this year. There were a couple good companies but unless you plan on taking your bachelors degree to Aldi or Abercrombie and Fitch, the fair didn’t have that much to offer.

  • http://aladinstreasurechest.com ethnie

    So true. I am a member of BNI here in Barbados. It is an international business and professional referral networking organisation where the memory hook is Givers Gain. We are on the look out for business for our members every day and they in turn do this for us. It works. We give first and gaining becomes automatic.

  • RKC

    Great article. I think it is important for people to understand that networking does not end with the networking event. Follow-up afterwards is just as important. Networking is building relationships when you do not necessarily ‘need’ anything.

  • madguru

    So basically stop being a douche and treat people like people. Amazing people need an article to “realize” something so basic.

    • Elmira

      That’s coecrrt. It may be the training you get or that special contact you make. Going to that networking event will change your future!Steven Schmeltzle recently posted..

  • Kayoko

    if you were not there to cnonect with them. Especially an event like Live The Dream II that are HUGE events with a lot of leaders to cnonect with.Grace recently posted..

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