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.

  • The Networker and the Hard Worker Your network lets you lift heavier loads. Some people just don’t see the point. Maybe they are part of a large organization. Maybe all of their “clients” are internal. Maybe they never have to deal with anyone outside the ivory tower. At any rate they ask, “Why should I bother to network? As long as I ...
  • The Scenic Route Well, that didn’t work out the way I’d hoped — and that’s OK. For about the past year, I’ve been trying to focus my speaking business on a specific target market. I thought I would try career resource departments at various institutions of higher education. It seemed like a good fit. I love working with the ...
  • Forward Behavior: Check the Facts Maybe they should have checked Snopes.com first To quote Dennis Miller “I don’t want get off on a rant here, but…” A few years ago, I wrote a post about being a responsible forwarder — someone who forwards articles of interest to other people in your network. While this can be a fantastic way to stay in ...
  • The Network Provides They say, every once in a while, we should count our blessings. We really need to appreciate all we have in our lives and know that we need to be good stewards of all the good things we have. I also like to count my networking blessings. Similarly, it helps remind me to take care of ...
  • Making the Magic I love Christmas. I love the presents. I love the food. I love getting together with family. I love the whole thing and I have loved it my whole life. When I was a child, Christmas was pure magic. I believed in Santa Claus and every year the lights on the tree just lifted my heart. ...
  • Limited Networker Field Guide: The Gray-Crested Moral Ambigue This is the another in the “Limited Networker Field Guide” series. Name: Gray-Crested Moral Ambigue Environment: Frighteningly common in all walks of life. Behavior: The Moral Ambigue shows up at networking events, businesses, and social events. His camouflaged markings make him appear much like any other attendee. The main distinction happens when he starts to regale you with ...
  • Networking Pride and Prejudice I love the A&E miniseries of “Pride & Prejudice“. There, I’ve said it and you may now proceed to call me a sissy-man. Just remember I also have a fourth-degree black belt. Joking aside, I do really enjoy watching this story and do so usually at least once per year. Great dialog. Great characters. Great story. One of ...
  • Knock Knock Networking On a long drive back from our family vacation at Mackinac Island, stuck in holiday traffic, we made the grievous error of introducing my daughters to the joys of “Knock-Knock” jokes. I’ll let that sink in for a few moments. I love my daughters, but they have the sense of humor that most children have which says: ...
  • Networking Muscle Memory I was toast. I was testing for my first Black Belt. The required form had 84 moves in it. Even if you only wanted to pass, you couldn’t make any memorization mistakes. I was in the middle of my examination when I suddenly realized I didn’t know what move came next. I was about to panic. Then ...
  • Beyond the Networking Honeymoon Be an outstanding member of the group. They are the networking dabblers. You see them at the local Chamber breakfast. Then you don’t. They show up at the lecture series. Then they’re gone. They join your referral passing group. Once again, they vanish. They hear that a particular networking venue is the place to go to grow their business ...
  • The Professional Networker It was time. Or at least my wife said it was time — time to update my office. Of course, being a guy, I saw nothing wrong with the mish-mash of hand-me-down furniture and cheap particle board shelves I had been using for the last twenty years. I mean, everything worked (mostly). Why did I need ...
  • Are They Clients or Connections? You know more about them than this, right? Is your network a network or just a list of names? What I mean is, if you suddenly decided to leave your current job or business right now (or someone else decided it for you), would you still be able to call upon your network for assistance? If you are ...
  • Always Confirm Everything Sometimes it makes sense to follow the rules. It seems to happen every time. Every time I violate one of my networking rules, it seems like I get a “gentle reminder” from the universe about why I have these rules in place. Today my object lesson was on the importance of confirming all aspects of networking meetings — one-to-ones, ...
  • Do You Need to Network? If you are looking for me on Oct 8, 2013, look here You don’t need to network. I’ll be speaking at the Michigan Council of the Society for Human Resource Management (MISHRM) in October and that is exactly what I’ll be telling them. Of course, if you aren’t in Human Resources, this post has nothing to ...
  • Count Your Cards Well, that was a little embarrassing. This past Thursday and Friday I was at an event with a lot of networking potential. No, that wasn’t the embarrassing part. I chatted with a lot of people. No, still not embarrassing. After a short chat, almost all of them said something that made me want to crawl away ...
  • Refill Your Networking Gas Tank “That’s all I can stands, cuz I can’t stands n’more.” — Popeye the Sailor I recently attended an amazing program called “Media Mastery Bootcamp” put on by Shawne Duperon of ShawneTV.com. It was a two-day, intensive workshop to prepare you to be interviewed by a reporter on camera. The information was great — as is everything ...
  • Do They Get a Second Chance? Just how long have you been waiting for their call? “Should I call again?” I get this question a lot in my workshops on following up after the event. Usually the person who asks has gone to the trouble to call or email someone they met at a business gathering. Basically, they left a message and are waiting ...
  • Three Strikes Charlie When networking you should always be yourself. You know that. I know that. I mean, if you aren’t being yourself, then how can they get to know you, right? Well, I had an experience the other night which makes me think I need to modify that dictum: When networking you should always be the best version of yourself. So, ...
  • Networking or Socializing? Is this networking? For some people, the clue bus doesn’t pick up at their stop. I was at the Selling Smart Workshop last Wednesday. My good friend and sales coach, Joe Marr, puts on this monthly event to help people learn some of the basics of good sales technique. I help as a member of his board ...
  • Networking at the Convention: When In the past few posts we’ve talked about the general concepts of how to network effectively at the convention. We’ve looked at the people you’ll meet and how to connect with them. We’ve dealt with the difficulty of how to structure your time and networking goals at such a large event by looking at it ...