When we began our GPS journey it became very apparent that there are two very distinct types of networkers. The group that gives us a bad name and drives everyone crazy are the ones that barge into every mixer, meeting, and event with only one goal in mine. SELLING and RECRUITING. You have all experienced them…pushy, invasive, single minded, and with absolutely no interest in finding out how they can establish a bond with others to create those lasting relationships that will get them referrals.
The most important quality for an effective networker is PATIENCE. You need to be able to respectfully and carefully establish your networking identity. Doing it the correct way takes TIME..but if you are willing use some of the following tips..you will get referrals and build your business.
1. Be a good listener. Make the person you are speaking to feel important and be sincere about that. They will know the difference.
2. Be true to yourself and follow your instincts. If it feels wrong or uncomfortable, even if this is how you were instructed to do it..it is probably the wrong approach. Adapt to your own personality and comfort level. You can move on from there to challenge yourself to grow.
3. Establish power partner relationships, especially if others in your group have similar interests, businesses and values. These alliances are PRICELESS. These are your tried and true business partners.
4. Go to as many member sponsored events as you can. Let others know you are willing to give first. If you cannot go, invite others you know that can and use your own database to share the information, services and products you know they will be interested in.
5. You love your products and business. Others will see that passion and love that product, just give them a chance to get to know you as a person. Offer great value,samples, possible discounts, and excellent service and you will receive the business AND all important referrals from your fellow networkers.
6. Share your talents and experience..women love to give of themselves. It comes back to you in many forms, whether friendships, collaborations, or sales. Its all good.
7. Be honest and fair in your business dealings. It takes FOREVER to recover from a promise broken or poor service. Don’t submarine your self and your business, by taking shortcuts or not following through, being late or not showing up. Your credibility is your best asset.
8. When you are at a mixer or event, remember it is not just about YOU but about the others at the event. Invite YOUR friends, family and business associates to support the entire group. No one likes the person that cannot stop talking about their product or service until it becomes invasive and annoying. Who wants to be avoided?? You want your booth to be a destination and you want folks to ask you questions about your products or services without being bombarded. If you are at a mixer work that room with purpose and intent, but be respectful and ask about the other person first.
Believe me I have made my share of networking mistakes. Fortunately I have learned from them and realized that the most important tip of all is that when I am sitting across from a new GPS member, new Mary Kay client or associate, is that has to be about HER and what SHE needs from our group or my products or company. Once you establish what her needs are you can effectively offer up the solutions to meet those needs. It is just that simple.