Professional Networking

You 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 first on the list: We show up every day.

Great networkers have to be professionals in this respect. They build the strongest connections through daily attention. This means setting daily networking goals (perhaps measured by a networking scorecard?). They make calls, write notes, forward articles, meet for coffee and lunch, attend events, and make referrals. For them, the activities of networking are just something that they do as a part of who they are.

Amateurs can still be successful, but because they aren’t dedicated on a daily basis to their networking connections, those connections aren’t as dedicated to them. They get fewer calls and fewer requests for one-to-ones. Ultimately, they see fewer introductions and fewer referrals. They still get some, but not as much as they would if they were truly committed.

So which are you — a Professional or an Amateur?

Photo credit: Joseph Sebastian

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About Greg Peters

Greg Peters, president and founder of The Reluctant Networker, LLC, is a business networking specialist. He works with trade associations on both the local and national level to create a culture of better connections and greater opportunity. Find out more at www.TheReluctantNetworker.com or gpeters@thereluctantnetworker.com.

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