Setting Goals for your networking activities.
Before you start “networking” you need to assess why you are networking, what you want to get out of networking and what your strategy for networking will be. This applies to everyone. It doesn’t matter who you are or how much experience you have at networking, whether you love it or whether you hate. But if you go in without a plan you will potentially waste a lot of time. A lot of time.
I have just moved to a new city. Started a new job. A job where I have a work-life balance (and therefore have time to do networking, events, getting to know people and all that jazz – in addition to my solitary downtime). Therefore my overall goals for the year is to get out there. Get out there and meet more people, build relationships, learn new things and if at all possible win work.
Yes. in case you didn’t know networking and business development is part of my job description and I need (and want) to do this on a regular basis. This therefore will often be in front of people. People like my boss and the other partners. People like my new colleagues (many of whom are much more eloquent than I am) and people who are my “competitors” (and judging me ever step of the way or so it feels).
So my goals for the next year (and if you are reading this mid-year don’t let it put you off you can set goal at anytime – don’t believe anyone who tells you otherwise) are as follows:
- Meet new people and expand my network;
- Get more confident at networking;
- attend one event a week (minimum)
- build relationships with the people that I meet and work on them.
- find a suitable way to organise my networking / contacts.
I am starting simple with 5. This is my starting point and in a few weeks I shall look at making these goals more actionable and a bit more refined. At this stage it is just getting a feel for:
- Why you are networking
- What you want to get out of networking; and
- What your strategy will be.
This blog (and book) is being written to document this process, pull together some of the tips from the blog Networking Tips for Beginners into a narrative and create a resource for readers and to help them get started with and hopefully excel at networking in a way that suits them,
I got rid of the ‘journal’ diary style series… this is the result: A Introvert’s Guide to Networking. A resource that others can use.
Why are you networking? What do you want to get out of networking?
As mentioned above for me I am networking because I want to meet more people, build my relationships and because it is part of my job. I want to use networking to help me meet new people and build those relationships.
Ask yourself the questions: Why are you networking? What do you want to get out of it? and set about writing some goals.