Networking is one of the most vital skills a modern professional can develop, and it’s a big part of The Austin Focus’ training program. Building and maintaining a thriving professional network requires mastery of many different skills, so we break the topic down into several different components, such as breaking the ice and following up.
Another important piece of the networking puzzle is learning how to connect with others once an introduction has been made. Without this crucial middle ground, the likelihood of a successful follow-up is low.
To ensure that we establish meaningful links with people we meet, we focus on three specific areas. First, we ask questions more often than we make statements. This communicates respect for another person’s opinions and ideas, which is always appreciated.
Of course, once we ask the questions, it’s important to listen to the answers. We go way beyond just hearing the words that are being said, and strive for understanding. We focus not just on language, but body language and other nonverbal cues too.
Speaking of nonverbal cues, this is the third component of connecting that we consider. Posture, eye contact, keeping our hands out of our pockets, not looking at our phones – these are all considerations that we discuss during The Austin Focus meetings.
Building a business network is a requirement for success in the modern business world.