5 steps to a stronger personal business network

5 steps to a stronger personal business network

5 steps to a stronger personal business network

Have you ever examined your personal business network to see what is missing or at least determine the strengths and weaknesses?

Following are 5 steps you can take to build a stronger personal business network.

Step 1. Take a network inventory
Most people in your network can be grouped into the following categories:

  • Connectors – people who know lots of people and will make connections for you
  • Operators – people who can get stuff done for you with their unique skills
  • Advisors  - people you can talk with about next steps and bounce ideas off of
  • Supporters – people who listen to your issues and provide a lift and motivation

You should write down your top 15-20 people in your network and group them into the above categories.  As a strong network requires balance, in the groupings above you can determine if your network is balanced.  Yes, some people will fit one or more categories but place them in the category they have a stronger association to.

If you are light in one area you may want to keep that in mind when you are at your next networking event or social outing and be on the lookout for people to fill the role.

Place the names on the following diagram.

networkcircle

Step 2. Determine the proximity to you

Within your network you highlighted above, how close are these contacts to you?  Like a balanced group you also want the proximity of people to be balanced.  Contacts which are closer to you are obviously stronger contacts and if the majority of a particular group is further away you may be out of balance.

Close proximity would be the person you see in the Airport you would make a point to go over and talk with them.  Further away would be the person you send an email to every few months with some communication back and forth.

You bring the proximity of your network in balance through contact with your network. Continuing to build stronger connections will also balance the proximity of your network and make it more effective.

You are the centre of the diagram, so move the people’s names closer or further away on the following diagram to highlight proximity.

networkcircleimg2

Step 3. Determine the inter-connections within your network

Within your network you need to determine who knows who.  If you find that everyone in your immediate personal network knows each other than your network can become too closed and you are missing opportunities.

You want to open up your network by meeting different people outside of your direct contacts and then begin to build strong ties with that new contact.

From the diagram above draw lines between people in your network to highlight the inter-connections.

networkcircleimg3

Step 4. Listen and help the contacts in your network

People need help and your personal network is no exception.  You can strengthen your network by helping make connections within your network.  Often you may know someone who can help someone else in your network but you have to listening carefully to your network contacts to know what is needed.

Remember if you have an open network some people in your network may not know that you know someone who can help so you have to be ready to listen and take action to make the connection.

Step 5. Ask your network for help

Just like you, others in your network may know people you have never met.  These people may be able to help you with achieving your goals.

Most people are not mind readers so you have to ask, “Do you know anyone who can help with …”? This will actually strengthen your personal business network because more new connections are being made.

Summary to build a stronger personal network

Step 1. Take and Network inventory
Step 2. Determine the proximity to you
Step 3. Determine the inter-connections within your network
Step 4.  Listen and help the contacts in your network
Step 5. Ask your network for help.

Also, remember strengthening your personal business network is an ongoing task which is very important to you and to the success in achieving your goals.  Good luck at building a stronger personal business network!

| Return

Post a Comment




Subscribe to our Newsletter
Subscribe

  • Recent
  • Popular
  • Tag
  • 5 steps to a stronger personal business network

    5 steps to a stronger personal business network

    Have you ever examined your personal business network to see what is missing or at least determine the strengths and weaknesses?Following are 5 steps you can take to build a stronger personal business...
  • Get Customers first NOT followers

    Get Customers first NOT followers

    Followers don’t pay the bills customers do. Some of the advice for small business start-ups in the market today tells about brand building and the need to engage people through social media, blogs, ...
  • Discover how to generate new content and topics instantly.

    Discover how to generate new content and topics instantly.

    Okay, you have decided to create content to build your audience online or to generate leads and fill your sales funnel. You have your plan and you are executing it but soon you run into the “what ne...
  • Top 10 Website Must-Haves

    Top 10 Website Must-Haves

    Success online for your business requires some key things your website needs. You will discover what your website needs and you can measure where your website measures up against these needs. Then y...