Bu Chi Chi Okezie
It is common place to hire a coach for almost every aspect of our lives and development. Whether it is for physical training, career development, business advancement, personal or spiritual growth. But, we rarely consider ascribing someone specifically for networking and building contacts to further our goals. There are a plethora of benefits and advantages for seeking help in the art of networking.
Listed below are tips for finding and consulting with a competent adviser.
Before you enlist a networking coach, do your homework. You may not find a professional who is labeled as a networking coach, per se but they can have compatible skills, abilities and service offerings. Definitely seek out someone who is well rounded and an expert in their field. Find an individual who is active in groups / associations both on and offline. This person should be social, professional, ethical and accommodating. A great way to start is by reaching out to your current networks and asking for leads, referrals or introductions. Make sure to include this criteria in your request.
When actively searching and gaining information, it is important to be patient. You want to be able to use good judgement and discernment for many reasons. First and foremost, this is an investment into your networking mission and can involve a lot of time, money and resources. Also, the focus should be in establishing and building a quality and meaningful relationship. Last but not least, this endeavor produces long term goals which are directly linked to your future success.
The journey truly begins once you have found your ideal coach. Use this as an opportunity to share your objectives and plan for advancement. Create a calendar for meetings, check-ins, accountability and benchmark your progress. Be actively involved and intentional about being consistent and devoted to the process.
Use these practical and empowering tips to hone in on your networking ambitions. Be strategic and mindful of how you select your coach and build your plans for success.
Chi Chi Okezie is owner/producer of SIMPLEnetworking, LLC in Atlanta, GA. Learn tips, tactics and techniques from the Champion Networker! Visit the SN Official Website: http://www.snseminars.com to read excerpts of her books, sign up for her newsletter, register for events and classes or visit her blog!