Do you get the wires crossed occasionally?
Do you ever unplug from your network?
Is your network outdated?
In recent weeks, I’ve been talking a lot about resilience. One thing I have suggested to reinforce your resilience is to focus on strengthening your network. Who is in your network? Does that matter? Do you take the time each day to connect and engage your network? Do you think it’s important to do that?
You need a robust and engaged network to be successful in life and career. It is important to develop a list of approximately 90 people in your life who can help you grow and be successful.
My list of 90 people is made up of connections that I have met through various meetings, conference presentations, volunteering, employment, family connections, friends, and general acquaintances. In developing my network, I included people who might want to know more about me and my business. Perhaps these people would be willing to share my message and read my emails. My network focuses on a small percentage of potential clients and a larger percentage of professionals and people who can sing my praises and share my work.
To build my list, I included 100 people I know. I listed their names and emails alphabetically on an excel spreadsheet so I can keep track of the dates of messages I send to them. This way I can systematically reach out to three people daily with a record of whom I have contacted. I use the same email message but personalize it, depending on the person or event happening at the time of the year. I use one core message for the 90 people on my list then develop another message to use in the next round of contact. The emails range from inspirational messages to sharing tips and content information on my work and life.
I never ask them to promote, sell, or refer me. My goal is to grow my relationship with these people so that I can build trust and credibility with them. I always try to add value to their lives and share a little bit about who I am or what I’m doing to keep them warm and engaged in case I ever need their support.
I review my list of 90 at least twice a year. I look at each person to see how his/her engagement will help me in my life. I occasionally remove people from the list and add new people so that I keep my network list up-to-date, engaged, and working for me.
It’s important that you take time to reflect and review any practice or connection that you have to make sure that you are building trust and credibility and providing value to the people you are connecting with or the service you are providing. Consistent action in networking will help you build a loyal network of professionals who will want to help and support you in your life and career.