Many people dislike networking because they misunderstand what it takes to be successful at it, writes Josh Mait for Inc. Here are seven networking myths that you can ignore.
- “I need your help.” Your networking strategy should not be solely based on getting others to do things for you. The best way to have a strong network of people is to give more than you receive.
- “Extroverts are the best.” Introverts can be just as successful at networking. For introverts, it’s important they play to their strengths by maximizing one-on-one conversations and personal referrals from people they’ve worked with.
- “The more connections I have, the better off I’ll be.” The quality of your connections is much more important than the quantity of your connections. Instead of collecting names and phone numbers, take a moment to figure out which connections are worth building a strong relationship with to help you in the long run.
- "Networking is deceiving.” Networking isn’t deceiving; it’s beneficial to both parties. Skilled networkers create mutually beneficial relationships with people that are great at what they do.
- “I have their card.” A business card is not an immediate connection. You have to put in the effort to contact the person to build a connection.
- “Small talk is the best way to start networking.” The new generation of professionals is more than happy to start conversations off with topics related to work. If you like what you do, don’t be scared to begin a conversation with it.
- “I’ll remember him.” It’s going to be hard to remember everyone you meet, even if they are in the inner circle of your network. This is when technology is valuable to the networking process. Keep a list of everyone you meet, their contact information and how they add to your network. If you ever need someone, you have an easy way of finding the best person for the job.
— Adapted from “The 7 Biggest Networking Myths, Busted,” Josh Mait, Inc.