Cover designer Ivan Smagin
Translator Jennifer Sunseri
© Alex Babushkin, 2017
© Ivan Smagin, cover design, 2017
© Jennifer Sunseri, translation, 2017
Created with Ridero smart publishing system
Remembering everyone is no easy matter. As a rule, each of us remembers dozens of people, including close friends we see often, or else acquaintances that we’ve talked to recently. If you keep a database of your contacts, you’ll be able to zero in on just who you need a lot faster. Don’t bother with hard-copy spreadsheets. Use Excel, Google Docs, or CRM software. For each person you enter into your database, add keywords you can use for searches later on. Keywords can include: specialty, position, company name, field of activity, city of residence, and so on. Enter new contacts in your database right after you make them. Make sure to update your info on the contact and what each contact has to offer so that it is always relevant.
Set a goal. This is your reference point for networking. Identify three to five people who can help you reach this goal. Expand your network of contacts, starting with getting to know these people.
Hubs are people with a wide range of active acquaintances. Hubs know a lot of people. These include politicians, journalists, event organizers, PR specialists, and professional networkers. They also include hairdressers, lawyers, headhunters, and successful entrepreneurs. Establish friendly or collaborative relations with these people. This will give you access to their network of contacts. Also, they can help you get in touch with whoever you might need to reach your goal.
This is the simplest and most effective way to expand connections. Invite acquaintances over to visit or to a meeting, and suggest they bring along someone you don’t personally know. Think of concentric circles as you expand your network of contacts. The circles grow larger as you make more and more new friends. Turn your friends’ friends into your connections.
If you don’t know how to approach a famous person, then look at his circle and decide who you can easily connect with. This might be a family member, or former and current colleagues, secretaries, friends, classmates. After you’ve developed relations with them, ask them to introduce you to the VIP. Let someone from the celebrity’s circle serve as the bridge between you and him (or her).
Don’t just promote your ideas to the decision-maker. Pay attention to the people around him or her. Sometimes it’s a lot easier getting to know them. Then, you can convey your idea to the decision-maker through them. Often, bosses approve decisions that have been submitted by their subordinates.
Be equally respectful toward who you talk with, regardless of status or position. Don’t just brush someone aside, even if you don’t think he or she is of immediate use to you. You never know – he or she may someday be a successful entrepreneur, and even your boss. All contacts are useful connections.
If you’ve lost contact with your classmates, then most likely you don’t know how successful they are and what they’re up to. Since you lost touch with them, many of your friends from the past have established themselves socially, changed their city of residence, moved into a position of stature in their occupation, or opened their own business. Reconnect with people you used to study with, served with, former colleagues, or your old classmates. Find out what they’re into now, where they work, where they live. Tell them about yourself and your projects. You just might come up with some new opportunities to reach your goals.
People with whom you communicate rarely and only chit-chat with are weak connections. But sometimes those contacts have more to offer than your close friends have. This is because when you hang with the same old group of people, you tend to be a lot like each other, both in terms of your interests and skills. What your close acquaintances know about and have to share is often information that you yourself are already aware of, or have easy access to. As a rule, weak connections have a circle of communications that is different from yours. For you, they represent new opportunities. So don’t forget about your weak connections – cultivate them. Sometimes they might end up being useful.
As a rule, it takes a lot of resources to get to know VIPS and big shots. The most stable relations are built between equals in status. To expand your circle of communications more quickly, start by establishing connections horizontally. Over time, one of the contacts in your network will succeed and move up the ladder.
Select events based on your interests, and visit at least one of them each week. Meet at least two people at each event. Then, by the end of the year you will have more than a hundred new acquaintances. If you want more, go to events more often, or increase the number of new acquaintances.
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