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Rich Kruse – The art of effective networking
October 3, 2008 @ 12:00 am EDT
Rich Kruse is the creator of Execuleaders, an outstanding organization that uses process to achieve effective networking. Rich Kruse has given a lot of thought to the process of networking. According to Kruse it is not a haphazard endeavor, but rather, a thoughtful set of strategies. When you walk into a room of people you would like to network with, you may feel a little ill at ease, but you can still make quiet one-on-one encounters. These encounters have to be many because your odds of meeting some person who immediately needs your product or service is small. The process becomes more comfo! rtable as you do it more and more.
Appearance is very important too. We can’t all look like Robert Redford and Sophia Loren, but we can dress nicely, and make sure our shoes are shined. Good personal grooming makes us more attractive even if nature has not blessed us.
Thoughtfulness and being a good listener. – In the process of listening to a new aquaintance you may find that you have information that can benefit that person. Make a note and mail him a copy of an article, or name a website that will be useful to his efforts, or send him a book. Will you get business from this behavior? Possibly, possibly not, but you have established yourself as a quality person. Rich quoted an old sales axiom that says, Nobody cares how much you know, until the know how much you care.
Kruse advises to always carry a pen. In fact carry several pens. Be ready to give that pen to your new friend so he has one for the rest of the day. The give away of an inexpensive pen costs you little, and may make a very favorable impression.
We all can have a bad day and be less than enthusiastic from time to time, but avoid people who are "wet blankets," They are bad news, and sales is a business of attitude. Listening to a littany of negative comments does not help that person, nor does it do anything positive for you.
And probably the most important tip- Be consistent. Going out to a network event once never to return again will do you little good, regardless of the number of business cards, you collected, or gave out. Choose a few networking groups and visit those groups on a regular basis. You’ll get better at the process when you can create a smile on a persons face when you walk in the room.