Networking is often seen as a vital part of professional and business success. It allows you to forge meaningful connections with other professionals, something that can serve you well both in the short and long term.

If you are a manager, squeezing networking into your day may feel like a challenge. However, if you follow the five tips below, you can do so more efficiently, allowing you to make more progress in less time.

  1. Get Comfortable With “No”

When you attempt to build a new connection, most professionals are happy to oblige. This also allows them to extend their network, creating a mutually beneficial situation.

However, not everyone is interested in maintaining contact with every person they meet, regardless of their position. Managers may not hear “no” regularly during their day to day, especially if they mainly communicate with members of their team, so being rejected can feel foreign.

It’s important not to be discouraged by a “no,” but it is also critical that you respect it. Learning to be comfortable with this response is a vital part of effective networking, and so is teaching yourself to bounce back.

  1. Be Nice to Everyone Along the Way

When you are networking, it pays to be nice. Each person you meet could provide you with value, whether it’s today or five years down the road.

Treat every professional you meet with the utmost respect, regardless of their position or current employer. This allows you to craft a good reputation, something that will serve you well over time.

  1. Communicate Regularly

Managers are usually busy individuals. However, you can’t build a strong network if you don’t make time to nurture your connections. Staying in regular contact is a big part of successful networking, so make sure to touch base often.

Even a simple, “How are things going?” can be enough to keep the connection alive. Plus, you have a multitude of convenient options for reaching out, including everything from social media messages to a quick coffee catch-up meeting, so you don’t have to dedicate a substantial amount of time to be effective in this area.

  1. Be Giving

When you network, it’s common to wonder what a particular connection can do for you. However, by approaching these interactions with a giving mindset, you can actually make more progress.

Any relationship you form needs to feel reciprocal, and that means you will need to extend yourself regularly. Don’t be stingy with referrals if someone could be an asset at your company and provide guidance whenever you are able. This helps you forge meaningful connections with other professionals, increasing the odds they’ll be there for you when you need them.

  1. Have a Goal

Networking should always be a strategic undertaking. Have an idea of where you want to go and seek out the connections that can help you get there.

Identify short-, medium- and long-term objectives and determine which potential paths could make them a reality. Then, consider who can help you on your journey and work to cultivate those connections.

Ready to network?

By following the tips above, you can network efficiently, even if you have a busy schedule. If you are interested in learning more, the professionals at PrideStaff can help. Contact us to discuss your networking goals today and see how our expertise can benefit you.

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