How to Perfect Power Networking
When I was 18 years old, I met a fellow entrepreneur through MySpace. He took me under his wing and taught me the ins and outs of entrepreneurship. Through him, I learned firsthand how to build a successful business. I can confidently say that without his help, I would not be the man I am today. I was fortunate to have this experience early on in life and because of it, I not only help out other young entrepreneurs, but I never stop looking for a new connection to make.
If you’re serious about building a business, then you have to understand the importance of both giving back and networking with everyone around you — trust me, the two are linked. Here are some tips to perfect the art of power networking.
Be Accessible and Approachable
No matter where I’m at — a coffee shop, grocery store, Kinko’s, etc. — I strike up a conversation with people I encounter. You never know where a new connection will lead. Maybe nothing will come of it immediately, but that person could be your most valuable connection five years down the road.
I had this mindset in 2009, and because of it, I met a man at Starbucks who ultimately made me a young millionaire. He gave me some valuable information about Internet marketing and, shortly after, I was investing in domain names. This random connection paid off more than I ever dreamt possible.
Every day, I wake up excited to grow my investments and build my company; I find motivation in family and charity work. What motivates you? What are you passionate about? Don’t forget this — or you may lose your motivation.
A great attitude can go a long way. It not only allows for more pragmatism in your day-to-day activities, but it helps in building meaningful relationships. Others will be drawn to your vigor, but be careful who you let close. Negative energy is contagious — you have to surround yourself with positive, driven people every day.
Believe me, I know growing your own business and creating your own brand is challenging enough without adding a mentor role to the mix. But part of being able to exude that positivity and network with anyone you can is giving back to others.
My wife and I are both very passionate about giving back and inspiring other young entrepreneurs; not only has it been rewarding, but it’s paid off. A little while ago, I started coaching a young guy who had a great business idea, and in the process of teaching him, I learned a lot about his industry. He went on to build a great company, and a year later, I decided to invest in his industry — my investment has produced 100 percent in gains because of what I learned while coaching this young entrepreneur.
Befriend People You Can Rely On
Your network is more valuable than any bank account. When I was just a kid, my father told me that 100 friends are more valuable than $100, and this is something that has stuck with me my entire life — and has made me a master networker.
The goal is to create a team of people whom you can rely on to get things done. In other words, you want to leverage these contacts to efficiently and effectively build your business. You’re going to have to exit your comfort zone, and, honestly, get incredibly uncomfortable. Befriend people from various industries. Attend networking events across the globe. Strike up a conversation with anyone. These people could be your future investors, future employees, or business partners.
All in all, you have to stay positive and look at every experience as an opportunity, whether it’s an opportunity to help, network with someone, or spread your positive energy. Don’t be afraid to “mess up,” especially at first. Maybe that person doesn’t want to talk to you, and that’s okay. Just move on and talk to someone else. Meeting the right person at the right place at the right time can be magical, but you have to make it happen.
Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons