Betsy thanks for your comments and feedback on my blog "there is work in NetWORKing", tell me why do you think people don't follow up when they have made the initial effort to network?
I think there are a variety of reasons: disorganization, lack of prioritization. It's hard for people to toot their horn. Folks are also insecure they think they couldn't possibly have anything valuable to offer, and don't want to intrude. Following up is barely warmer than a cold call, especially if the encounter fell short in ways one could re-engage with the person. Good face to face is just as much of an art. People try, but they don't study and practice how to network successfully.
So Betsy, what are some of your own experiences of networking?
They've run the gamut. I've had success, and I've failed to follow-up myself. I've assessed potential inappropriately, and I'm sure I've missed opportunities. I've built great relationships from one chance encounter, and I've tried to make things happen that never had a prayer. The critical element for me has been my approachability, and the match in potential with my products and services with the venue and the other participants.
That's a great point matching potental, I never feel you should sell too aggressively at a network event, what tips and advice would you pass on to budding networkers?
Find an association or venue that fits. Have a plan. Study up on how to work a room. Don't hang at the food table or the bar. Move around and look to join conversation. Don't be afraid to make the first move. Don't overshare, or overstay your welcome in a conversation. Look to meet an interesting person or two, not to sell something. Think of networking as developing relationships over a longer term. There's no such thing as an immediate payout.
Bestsy, its been a pleasure getting the benefit of your experience, good luck and good networking on and off line!
You can find Betsy networking and blogging at: