Most of us organically grow our business networks through our friends, family, acquaintances, colleagues and clients. But have you ever tried giving your network building an adrenaline shot?
Purposely building your business network is simple, enjoyable, effortless and life changing.
To pick up on the four points, let's start with Effortless. We can all build our network without leaving our kitchen table. How? Through social media. Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn are excellent places to start, they offer amazing tools for business and are user friendly. You can also find many helpful blogs and expert tips online to get you started.
Enjoyable... try business networking meetings; there are many across the UK. In every town and city you'll find a host of different events to suit your personality and business. Whether you prefer an informal and relaxed atmosphere or the competitive referral driven networks, there really is something for everyone. But be careful not to be put off by attending one that isn't for you, as they are all different and attract different personality types.
Easy of course. But as with anything in life, the more you put in the more you get out. Start with creating a simple database, add your business contacts, connect with them on LinkedIn and you are off and running. Then look to add to your network by meeting new people, through social media, networking, and why not ask your network for introductions to relevant people in your industry with whom you can collaborate. Most likely they will be delighted to hear from you as they are also building their network.
Life Changing too. By bringing new people into your life inevitably new opportunities will open up for you. You are likely to meet people with a similar mindset and values, inspirational entrepreneurs in related industries with whom to share knowledge and lend mutual support through good times and bad.
If this has tempted you to start on your networking journey, then hopefully I'll meet you somewhere along the way. Good luck.
Article and photography by Ben Molyneux