People are very good assets to have, because whatever you plan to do, you need the right people. This is why networking is an essential lifestyle for people whoever wishes to climb up the ladder. According to investopedia, you need to form a complex pattern of interconnecting relationships with other people, in other words, grow your circle.
Every person you meet have an important role to play in your life. With that being said, it’s common practice for people to befriend other people simply because of what they can get from them. Do not suck up to other people because you think they can help you. It’s good to have friends who will be there to offer a hand whenyou need it, but do not let that be the only reason why you make friends.
The essence of networking is to get good connections, but also understand that you need to develop good contacts and establish genuine relationships with people. Do that and put the following in mind:
1. Know That Every Person Counts: If you really want to play the networking game well, don’t look down on anybody. Understand that everybody you come across counts. In some companies, The secretary or the personal assistant to the boss is even more important than the boss himself. If you are not given permission by the p.a. you can’t get anywhere near the boss. People like these are often overlooked during conferences and events. Everybody wants to suck up to the boss. The body guard of a VIP can prevent you from gaining access to him. Play your cards right.
2. Be Helpful: The essence of networking is to help and support other people. Don’t just connect with people if you can’t be of any value to them, show up at their event, connect them with others who may be helpful too. Support in any way you can.
3. Befriend Your Rivals: Ignore your petty differences and make friends with your rivals. Warm up to those who have been your career rivals for a while and put aside your differences. You would be surprised to see that they have also done the same.
4. Volunteer: Join volunteer groups and help out. Join communities where you can connect with people and also help them carry out small tasks. It will go a long way, and you will easily be remembered.
5. Follow Them Up: When you eventually have good connections and have built relationships, follow up with your new contacts. Send emails and keep in touch.