When you’re an upstart entrepreneur, having a following is essential to get your product off the ground. Before you can do that, though, you need to build a network. Too many people these days undervalue this critical skill. In this article, Scott Crockett with Everest Business Funding explains five powerful ways to build your network as an entrepreneur.
While this method isn’t as easy to pull off in the current world, it doesn’t change the fundamental truth that is interacting with people face-to-face is still the best way to connect with them. As the pandemic winds down, you will need to start engaging with people in person more, and you should take advantage of that fresh energy to establish some strong connections with people.
Form Long-term Connections
You have exchanged contact information from that professional you admire, but you never followed up with them afterward. This is a mistake since it demonstrates to them just how little you value their time. If you want to succeed in networking, then you need to be engaging with people consistently. It is better to have ten strong connections than 100 weak ones.
Deepen Existing Relationships
The quickest and easiest way to build strong connections is to start from within your own existing circle. Reach out to your friends and try and spend more time with them. Go out to lunch with them, call them, invite them for a virtual coffee or lunch, do something that keeps that friendship alive. The reality is that you never know which one of your contacts will help you when the need arises.
Attend Networking Events
Just about every industry has things like trade shows and conferences. Whether it’s online, offline, it doesn’t matter. Go to as many of these as you can. Each one is an easy opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals. For online, you can utilize social media and networking sites, but the principles remain similar. These sorts of opportunities cannot be overstated in their usefulness.
Join Clubs Like Toastmasters
Toastmasters is a public speaking club with meeting places all over the world if you don’t know. It is a great way to meet people from every walk of life. You will be doing a great favor for yourself by honing your communication skills and maybe even get over that fear of presenting that many people suffer from. You will also build camaraderie with your fellow members as you all go through the same struggle together.
In the end, what really matters when networking is determination and a willingness to get out of your comfort zone.
About Scott Crockett
Scott Crockett is the founder and CEO of Everest Business Funding. He is a seasoned professional with 20 years of experience in the finance industry. Mr. Crockett’s track record includes raising more than $250 million in capital and creating thousands of jobs. Scott has founded, built, and managed several finance companies in the consumer and commercial finance sectors.