If you’ve been following my blogs here on business networking, you’ve already found why to network, where to network, and how to network as well as what an ideal networking relationship looks like and with whom you should seek that. Now we’ll discuss some issues I’ve seen in networking groups that I suggest you avoid.
After you’ve participated in a business networking group, it’s easy to feel like these people are your friends (and they should be). This causes some people to stop being careful how they treat these people. This is a huge mistake! I’ve seen people treat their networking partners in ways that they would never think of treating a customer. Think about this. These are people who are hopefully referring you customers on a continuing basis. Shouldn’t you treat them as well or better than you’d treat your best customer? It amazes me how many people don’t figure this out.
Here’s the point. These people watch how you treat them and others they see you interact with. This is their primary basis for judging how you would treat their customer referrals to you. If they see you not treating themselves or others in the group well, they are very unlikely to refer their precious customers to you. At that point, you have just missed out on the whole purpose of business networking.
Hopefully, you’re not the type of person who has to consciously deal with this, since you treat everyone well regardless, but if you’re not, you had better pay close attention to what I said above & act on it.
Dave Coblitz – The St. Louis Artographer