I think by now we have all accepted the fact that our economy is in crisis and there is not an immediate panacea to catapult us back to financial stability. Every day we hear of more businesses going bankrupt and laying off employees.
Perhaps you are lucky enough to be employed or own your own business. Even if you are currently unemployed, now is the time to get out there and network! If you are vigilant at networking, you can continue to build your business, keep your job, and land a new position.
What to do if you own a business? Network!
- Regularly stay in touch with your customers to ensure that they are pleased with your services.
- Consistently expand your referral network. Set appointments every week. Target specific numbers of new contacts per week.
- Look for new opportunities to showcase your business through your network. Write articles, blog, guest blog, go to networking meetings. Keep visible on your social media sites.
- Fine tune your pitch. Make sure that your message is compelling and memorable.
- Look for partner opportunities with complimentary businesses in your network. Tap your referral network for ideas.
- Entice new customers with special promotions. Brainstorm with your contacts. Collaborate.
What to do if you are employed? Network!
- Make sure you stay visible at work. Now is not the time to hide in the shadows.
- Regularly meet with your boss to discuss your progress and set new goals.
- Expand your referral network inside and outside the company. Keep in contact with your network contacts on a consistent basis.
- Use social media sites to network. Join industry related groups on sites such as LinkedIn to increase your network and visibility.
- Develop an action plan. Who is in your web of influence at work? Who do you need to stay in front of? What actions are necessary?
- Keep track of your accomplishments on a daily/weekly basis. Be prepared to speak about your successes.
- Prepare your personal pitch. Be ready 24/7 to talk about what you do with your internal and external contacts. Don’t miss out on a opportunity to promote yourself because you are not prepared.
What to do if you are looking for a job? Definitely network!
- Write out a list of your accomplishments. Review the list and write down what these successes say about you.
- Write 3-5 personality pluses and how they helped you in your past positions.
- Make contact with everyone in your network. Include family, friends, former colleagues, professional contacts (doctor, lawyer, chiropractor, dentist, accountant, etc.) and let them know what type of work you are seeking.
- Update your personal message to include your accomplishments. Your message should be upbeat and positive.
- Work the social media sites and industry related groups.
- Do your online searches daily and see the types of positions out there.
- Be clear what you want. Set your intentions in that direction. Let everyone know what type of position you are seeking.
- Prepare for each job interview. Research the company. Investigate to see if your network contacts have relationships in the company to help your efforts.
The challenge whether you are employed, unemployed, or a business owner is to stay focused on work and keep a positive attitude. Set your intentions on new opportunities through your network contacts. Your diligence in networking activities will lay the groundwork for your continued success even in a down economy.