February 22, 2018
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I just downloaded a song by Gavin DeGraw called Follow Through that just might become my new theme song for this networking blog. Success in business, sports, and relationships often comes down to the follow through. Golf and tennis pros often point out the follow through of a swing will determine where the ball will land. The same applies to swinging a bat or throwing a ball. The follow through determines the end result.

What is your follow through strategy when it comes to networking? Do you simply collect business cards or do you do something with them? Here are some of my strategies:

  • When I add a networking event to my schedule, I block out 30 minutes on my calendar the next morning to follow up on contacts I made at the event. The follow up is usually an email saying how much I enjoyed meeting them, and it might include an offer to connect on LinkedIn or some other social network. Usually it includes a name or link to information that I found out would be helpful when I asked them how I could support them.
  • When I am at the networking event I write on the back of the card anything I promised to follow up about. That is the only way I’ll remember who I made commitments to, especially if it is a long evening with many introductions.
  • I give myself a task to follow up with them at some interval to reconnect. This might be to see if something I suggested worked or if they ever reached someone I introduced them to. I keep my name in front of them so that they remember the connection.
  • Even though I have a database (Salesforce) for my contacts through my employer, I keep the physical business cards in my personal files. I have boxes of business cards that I have collected over the years.

If you tell someone you meet that you will do something on their behalf, you must do it in a timely manner. Even if you reached out to your network to see if you could find what they needed and were unsuccessful, call or email them and let them know that you at least tried.

As Gavin says in his song, “Oh, this is the start of something good. Don’t you agree?”

 

Sue Connelly, founder of kit-list.org, has started a “Pay It Forward Wave” starting today, January 11, 2010. If you’re not a member of kit-list, it’s a free job listing service. Here’s Sue’s challenge. Please join me in making it happen.

Hello Everyone,

Today is the first of five days to create a powerful wave of action across the country in a tremendous force for good. If you didn’t see my earlier post about this idea, please read it for the full story.

Please do something right now. Just take a moment to do something simple and easy. Reach out. Make a call. Ask a friend what one or two things you can do to help with his/her job search.

We’ll use this blog as real-time way to find out what’s happening. Please use the comments section to suggest ideas or share what you did today for a friend.

Pass the word so we can get thousands across the nations mobilized to help get friends back to work! Please help by sharing this on your email lists, Facebook, Twitter and blogs.

Ideas for Things to Do:

  • Forward a job lead
  • Write a LinkedIn recommendation
  • Review a friend’s resume and give objective feedback
Set a time to meet for coffee or a drink (heck, we all need one these days!). In-person meetings are important, it bouys spirits and sparks ideas and energy – plus it’s fun!
  • Make some calls on a friend’s behalf
  • Pass on a link to a good job site or a great article on job search
  • Make an introduction to a friend in a company he/she is interested in
  • Reach out to a colleague who has been laid off from your company to see how he/she is doing and offer to make connections for him/her
  • Become a “Job Buddy” – commit to meet on a regular basis to set goals and provide gentle accountability (if you are both looking for jobs, there’s a double benefit)
  • Offer to do some role playing for a job interview
  • Tell (and write down!) four strengths/qualities you see in your friend
  • Review or help write a strong cover letter
  • Invite a friend to connect to you on LinkedIn with the purpose of giving them access to your network so he/she can see if you have contacts in companies on their wish list
  • • Help with career ideas, brainstorm on other ways to use their skills, suggest good companies to target, how to transition into a new industry

Let’s make this big push building a huge Pay It Forward Power Wave across the country!
Thanks so much,
SueKIT List Founder
http://www.kitlist.org/