Building Networks and Networking with a Global Mindset


US Map 2You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. said Al Lichtenstein during our webinar on building networks and networking with a global mindset. We discussed best practices in networking especially by looking at networking experience in the United States. Here are key insights from our discussions:

Stay in touch; starting to network when you need to will take more effort. Networking should be part of your everyday life. Being informed about your networks will help you be more productive and ultimately more marketable. Building networks to reach strategic goals will help decision makers make confident and enthusiastic decisions about your candidacy or business.

Networking is very much about being visible.  Try to meet in-person to also have time to connect at diverse levels and make a visual memory. An in-person meeting will reflect your energy levels. Look to build trusting relationships.

Prepare to be resilient. Getting a new job or identifying a new business opportunity can take time, especially if you have not been networking for a while. Networking can feel daunting and can involve a great deal of rejection. Prepare mentally and physically for this journey.

Share your story with a succinct message.  What makes you different and why? Understanding why you are qualified for a particular job or a specific business opportunity can open up even more doors in the same direction. Let others know what energizes and motivates you about this kind of work.

Utilize social media. Often times, when we ask how people engage with their LinkedIn contacts they don’t have a quick answer. Use social media to learn, connect, share and possibly co-create (posts) for visibility.

Always be aware of networking opportunities during normal routines. You may meet your next opportunity at the gym or a social function.

Develop and become part of an ecosystem that provides value to your clients and contacts.  Being in touch with contacts requires resourcefulness. We are much more resourceful when working with others who have diverse areas of subject matter expertise of interest to our clients and contacts. We become valuable to clients and contacts when they achieve success by being in touch with and working with us.

Be organized.  Networking is a path towards your strategic goals. You will most likely need to make connections between diverse contacts. Make sure to take notes and keep a journal. Spreadsheets can work great for this purpose.

Set networking goals.  Building business in three to six months-time can require at least six diverse forms of calls on contacts per day. The more contacts you make, the greater the chances of you achieving your goals.

Remember cultural differences in networking.  Building trust and a long-term outlook on relationships vary across cultures when networking. While your group associations and relations may be important in the culture familiar to you it is typically important to understand the problem and demonstrate your capabilities in the United States. Good conversation starters may be the weather, sports, hobbies and how a person may have joined the job, event or industry, and are sensitive to any privacy concerns people may have. The United States also covers a large geographic area and people’s world views and business practice may differ significantly according to the local culture and their own diversity factors. It’s necessary to analyze a situation from a cultural, regional and personal perspective before building your networking strategy and tactics.

Thank you, Al for sharing your expertise with many examples and stories from your own experience which lit the way to networking for success in the United States for us.

Looking forward to great conversations again soon…

Al LichtensteinAl Lichtenstein is a senior human resources executive and a career coach with a track record of achieving results. Before founding HR RESULTS, LLC, he worked for companies in the professional services and life sciences industries.  Being a hands-on head of HR and a contributing member of the senior management teams, Al is used to recommending strategic HR initiatives and then “rolling up his sleeves” and implementing them. His Human Resources departments supported organizational growth and development by being customer focused and highly responsive.

He has extensive experience addressing strategic organizational HR issues, designing and implementing results based performance management processes, aligning them with organizational reward and recognition systems. He developed and facilitated programs for company selection processes, focusing on interviewing skills and creating legally sound behavioral interview questions. He designed, implemented and conducted management and leadership development training programs and facilitated cross functional teams in the creation of career ladders and career development programs.

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