It’s a phrase we’ve heard over and over again from parents, coaches, and peers: “Put on your game face!”, but what does it have to do with networking? To be a great connector and an awesome networker, you have to train and prepare much like you would for sports. Somewhere along the way most of us have trained for something whether it be a 5k, a golf league, a chess tournament, or even little league baseball. We went to the practices and learned the sport. We honed our technique to be better than we were the day before. The same needs to be done when it comes to building your social framework and networking with other professionals.
Everyone has strengths and weaknesses, and it is no different when it comes to networking. We need to train ourselves in networking much like an athlete would train for sport. Through training we can work on building up our weaknesses as well as capitalizing on our strengths. Jackie Pizzuto, a great networker and Client Service Specialist for a financial planning firm, says: “You do have to train yourself to succeed in networking. You have to know yourself and know your strengths...you have to learn how you network best and what works for you so that it's not a constant pain.”
Another master networker is Justin Casey, Sales Executive for the Charles P. Leach Agency. For him it is more about training the mind. His first thought at a networking event is always “Why am I better than any other person in my field, and how can I highlight that to beat out my competitors?”. He calls it his “Competitive Advantage.”
As you can see, networking is not something that just anyone can do and be great at, but just like any sport or art, the best always make it look effortless. So keep training your mind and body to be the best networker you can be, and as famed weightlifting coach Ivan Abadjiev once said: “Never be satisfied. Never.” Always keep pushing, never become sedentary, and abandon your comfort zones. Put on your game face and I hope to see you at an upcoming mixer!
ServiceMaster by Bell, Inc.