How does a long forgotten cliché underline 2 of the most crucial golden rules of networking?

19 Sep 2018

I was catching up with a few podcasts this morning (and I can’t miss this opportunity given the context, don’t forget the Tenandahalf CoffeeCast!).  Half way through a discussion on personal branding the hosts of Professional Services Marketing reminded me of an old cliché I’d totally forgotten:

 

“Just be yourself, everyone else is taken.”

 

Aside from the fact it’s dead right, it immediately reminded me of 2 of the golden rules of networking we regularly share with the lawyers, accountants, patent attorneys, barristers and architects we work with, 2 points that have come up repeatedly already this week (and it’s only Wednesday!):

 

The first links in with a question we’re asked an awful lot - “have you got any good networking tips?” 

 

When I get asked that my first response is always the same – just be yourself.  Somewhere down the years networking got confused with a verb to describe transparent selling vehicles, pushy people with elevator scripts feigning interest in you so they can follow up to invite you for coffee and pump you for referrals and introductions … not that I have strong views on this but it’s WRONG!

 

Networking is actually about meeting people and getting on with them.  If you do get on, work might come once you’ve established a rapport and built up some trust.  However unless you’re being yourself, you’ll never get to the rapport stage never mind the trust stage.  People can spot an act so please don’t put one on. 

 

The second point the host’s cliché reminded me o is something else I mention to clients with increasing regularity.  People will only make introductions and pass your name on if they genuinely get on with you and to do that, you need to a) be yourself and b) be comfortable with the fact that being yourself will work on some of the people you meet but not with everyone.

 

So always remember that when you’re out trying to build up your professional network, just be yourself because everyone else it taken.

 

 

Tenandahalf provide networking training and 1on1 business development coaching for lawyers, accountants, patent attorneys, barristers and architects.  You can find out more here.


Posted by Douglas  |   0 Comments

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