Many view networking as something you do as you go, or take advantage of when the opportunity stands right in front of you. Although both of these things can be true, building long lasting relationships in the business world takes a little more work and proactive thinking than simply signing up for a local networking breakfast the night before.
Squirrels prepare for the winter months by collecting nuts, and like our little furry friends, we should also consider working ahead so that the relationships are already there if we need a little help in the future. It’s never too early to start gathering your workplace acorns.
A wise relationship marketer is always thinking about what comes next. So in the networking world, you may be going out to gather a few acorns every week. Whether you make new relationships or reconnect with old contacts, remember these tips for successfully building long-term relationships:
- It’s important to make initial contacts, but don’t forget about your pre-existing relationships. Renew and revisit important friendships to make sure that your bond is still strong.
- Use relevant and valuable social media. Show what you have to offer in the form of tweets, videos, and blog posts. You can become a reliable resource for advice and helpful content.
- Know that in the business world, you have to make a sale in order to stay running. You may need to use your judgment, without being pushy, on which relationships will help your business the most.
- Ignore criticism from others who don’t understand the necessity of preparation. By reaching out to your contacts and planning out events on your calendar ahead of time, you are working to help out your future self.
- Lay out strategies for immediate, intermediate, and long-term relationship building tactics. Focus on what others need and work to be a resource for them!
- Remember that no one owes you anything. Create value for them so that you are their best interest.
It’s always beneficial to put yourself out there and meet new people. Investing in new and old relationships and being a resource for others are some of the best ways to guarantee long lasting connections that you can count on!
This post was written by your BBB Serving Central Ohio's Content & Communications Coordinator, Jordan Abbruzzese.