Tuesday, November 10, 2009

How to network with busy people

In his personal development blog, American self-help guru Steve Pavlina has run a series of articles talking about how to approach busy people in a way that yields results.

Pavlina correctly points out that the more successful people are, the harder it becomes for them to keep up with the weight of their inbox. As they become involved in social networks and associated forums, it becomes even more difficult to respond to everyone who wants some of their time. This leads to people becoming disillusioned when they don't get a response.

If you're serious about engaging with successful people, it's important to stand out from the crowd. So many people still send connection requests on LinkedIn, Facebook, Ecademy and other social networks without comment. They expect people to respond without giving them a reason to do so.

Challenge them intellectually, ask the right questions, share some new ideas. Do something to make them sit up and take notice of your approach. Remember that the vast majority of non-urgent emails will be deleted without consideration. As Pavlina points out, that becomes inevitable if successful people are to remain on top of the game.

Above all, understand what will motivate them to want to network with you. Most people think the other way around, and then wonder why they're not successful.

1 comment:

  1. Rosemary Slosek3:44 pm

    I used this approach a couple of years ago with great success.

    I wanted to approach a very busy sales trainer. I waited until I saw my opportunity where he would want to reply to my initial contact: he made a comment on a blog, I messaged him with a comment personally relevant to him and added in a reference to a mutual contact. That added interest and also meant he could easily find out more about me from a trusted source.

    End result was a long lunch with him and his family, a brainstorming session and the start of the club I run which has been successful since its launch.

    It works.