Digging Your Network Well Deeper: Five Strategies

Digging your well deep is important if you are going to get the best water, or even the precious oil that resides there. Have you ever seen a well that is only 3 feet deep and 6 feet wide?  Yes, they call them retention ponds and even they are deeper than 3 feet.  They serve little purpose beyond managing run off water.  This is not water you can go out and drink, it simply looks nice in most cases.  To get the clear cold water that can enrich your life, allow you to cook, clean, create steam and run a civilization you have to go deep.

It works the same way with your network.  The deeper you go with your relationships the more valuable the results you will reap.  Unfortunately, networking has the bad reputation of more is better.  In most cases, I find that people pretty much know all the people they really need to know in order to accomplish the things they really want to accomplish, only problem is, those relationships tend to be shallow and not well nurtured.

If you want to get results from your network go deeper, here are 5 things that you can do to begin the process of digging your networking well deeper.

1.  Choose 5 – It is easier to focus on a few versus the masses, if you have built a large network it is important to take a look at your inner circle.  From that circle, choose 5 whom you would like to have a better networking relationship and think about those 5 people and how you can help them.  Make deposits into the relationship.

2.  Get to know them – how much do you know about your 5 people.  You should know what Goals they are trying to accomplish in their business, what they are most proud of accomplishing, where else they network or would like to network, what are they passionate about beyond what they do for a living.

3.  Ask “How can I help you?” – find out ways that you can help your 5 people.  Can you distribute material for them, make an announcement for an event they are having, display their business cards, or mention them in your newsletter/blog?   Making deposits into the relationship assures you of the opportunity to make a withdrawal when you need it.

4.  Stay in contact – When communication changes so does the relationship, being out of contact for long periods of time slows down the relationship process and allows relationships to go cold.  Leave the occasional voice mail reminding your network that you are there to help them, drop a note card in the mail and of course invite your 5 to events and network together.

5.  Take advantage of Social Networking Sites – Facebook, Linkedin, and Twitter make it easy to keep up with your network.  Connect to them, read what they are posting, comment on their post and in general show them that you are interested in what they are doing and saying.   The Internet has made it so much easier to stay in communication for those times when you are out of the loop but still want your network to know you are interested in them.

All things being equal people want to do business with people they know, like and trust.  Going deeper into your network and building stronger relationships will reap you more rewards than constantly adding more strangers to the mix.  This week take some time to identify at least 5 people you would like to develop and start working on making deposits.

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