The Reluctant Networker Blog by Greg Peters

We all know that networking — or word-of-mouth — is one of the best ways to grow a business. But what if you don’t know where to start? What if you don’t know what to say? What if the other kids laugh at you? We can help.

  • Treating Them like BabiesOur daughter, Abigail, is two weeks old and is, in general, a true delight and a wonder. She’s a very sweet baby and is already teaching me lessons about life and (I know you’ll find this a shock) networking. I’ve been amused to find the similarities between my infant daughter and several networking connections whom ...
  • The Incomplete NetworkerA lot of people tell me that I just don’t understand how difficult it is for them to get out and network. After all I’m such a naturally outgoing person. Right. It’s about at this point that I remind them that I am a computer programmer by training — a training which did not include how to interact ...
  • Types of Events: The Breakfast I guess I can’t really call it a series until I have more than one post on the subject, so here is the second in my non-regular series about general event types and the tactics, tips, and techniques we can use to make them pay off. As with the lunch-time networking event that we discussed yesterday, ...
  • Types of Events: The Luncheon Networking events come in all shapes and sizes and each individual event has its own “personality” which can make it a better or worse opportunity for us. Still, we can group most gatherings into larger categories which all share similar attributes. This is the first of a non-regular series about the different types of events ...
  • You Have to at Least Like ThemWith some people it’s instant chemistry.With others … not so much.In the early days of networking, you would develop connections with someone based solely on what you thought you could gain from them. You connected with those in power or who would someday be in power strictly based upon the benefit you could gain from ...
  • Missing the Finish LineI attended one of my favorite networking events last week, the Abundance Forum. I try to hit this one every month because it’s usually chock-a-block full of good information (which will help me succeed in my business and personal life) and good people (who pretty much do the same thing). This time, though, I walked ...
  • The DifferenceFriend or networking connection?I’ve noticed that a lot of people get confused by the difference between friends and strong networking connections. Let’s compare them side-by-side so the difference is clear.Networking connections: Develop over months or years We help them without expectation of return They know about our goals and dreams They want to see us succeed and will help ...
  • What We Have to GiveEleni KelakosThe next time you are wondering how you can help out one of your networking sources, of course, first ask them what they need. Then give them one thing more. Encouragement. Or acknowledgment, or recognition, or hope. Let them know that you believe in them and their dream. ‘Cause we all know just how hard it ...
  • Giving Write Back, Part 2 Yesterday we talked about some of the writing styles we could practice in order to give back to our network. Of course, the four I mentioned were only the tip of the iceberg. Here are a few more, several of which can help make stronger connections with specific individuals in addition to making more general ...
  • Giving Write Back, Part 1 One of the underlying precepts of good networking practice is the understanding that our success in our life is dependent on how much we can help others to succeed in theirs. While, of course, this includes making referrals, recommendations, and introductions in order to help our connections directly, we also have numerous opportunities to give ...
  • Good Networking Behavior is about UsDon’t blame him for being a bad networker.At the end of each class down at Keith Hafner’s Karate, we get to listen to the lesson of the week. Now, in general, these are lesson that all adults (should) know — goal setting, making friends, conquering fear. I always love it when the topic of good ...
  • The Sales Superstition I’ve always been intrigued by B. F. Skinner’s experiments with pigeons to try to replicate the process of developing superstition. The experiment is remarkable in its simplicity. Basically, the pigeon is fed at completely random intervals. Neither the bird nor the person running the experiment have any control over when the pellet will drop. What ...
  • Good News, Bad NewsWhat color is the sky in your conversational world?While I don’t believe that it is the be-all and end-all of networking, Facebook does have its uses, so I tend to spend fifteen minutes or so each evening checking up on friends who hang out there. Recently I’ve noticed something interesting about the interactions between different folks ...
  • The Stuff in the Back of the RefrigeratorDon’t make this a part of your networking.OK, we’ve all experienced this, so don’t even bother trying to deny it. You know how sometimes you make dinner and it turns out pretty good — not great, but not bad, either? The recipe makes way more than you can eat in one sitting, so you put ...
  • A Level of Risk One of the things we talk about with respect to referrals is that the higher the risk associated with your business, the longer it takes before your network begins to take off. The classic example of this is just about anyone who works in the field of financial services. When you are recommending someone to ...
  • The Newest Reluctant NetworkerAbigail at 90 minutesIf you’ve read this blog over the last year and more, you know I get a lot of inspiration from my daughter, Kaylie. Well, as of this morning at 7:58am, I now have twice the inspiration. Please welcome the newest member of our household, Abigail Cecilia Peters. Mommy and daughter are both healthy ...
  • Patience is More Than a VirtueThe wait isn’t fun, but try to skip it and you’ll miss the ride.Those who have friended me on Facebook know that the ideas of patience and waiting are very much on my mind right now. In particular, I’ve been thinking about how difficult it is to be patient when you’ve done everything you can do to ...
  • Lack of Preparation Means Opportunities Lost I think we’ve covered my lack of perfection in sufficient depth that we all know that I can occasionally be used as an example of what not to do when it comes to networking. Monday morning would be a case in point. But what can you expect from a Monday? My good friend and sales coach, Joe Marr ...
  • Hearts and Happy Valentines I’ve written many times in the past about how networking is not just for success in our professional lives. In fact, with Valentine’s Day just past, it’s a good time to reflect on how that same web of relationships which helps us bring in profitable referrals can also smooth over rough spots in our personal ...
  • Professional NetworkingYou need more than a suit to make you a professional.I’ve been re-reading Steven Pressfield’s “War of Art” lately. I liked the section where he differentiates between the Professional and the Amateur. He listed a number of qualities specific to the Professional, but one of the ones that stuck out for me was, in fact, the ...