by Evonne Bethavas, The Doxia Network Australia
“The richest people in the world look for and build networks. Everyone else, looks for work.” –Robert Kiyosaki.
Ladies, I ask you this- how many times have you found yourself chasing employers, desperately spending hours on perfecting your resume and spent hundreds of dollars on that designer business suit for a job interview, only to be disappointed with a never ending number of rejection emails flooding your inbox? Yet, when you’re not even looking for work, you spontaneously meet a friend of a friend at that Friday night social gathering, who happens to be hiring and offers you the job on a silver platter? No effort required!
“This only happens to lucky people,” you say. Wrong! This happens to smart people. People who understand, that the recipe to success these days exceeds mere hard work. You need to be efficient, street smart and a 24-hour a day networker.
What is networking?
So does this mean you pin every person you meet against a wall and interrogate them about helping you feed your professional career? No! Please don’t-no one likes a desperado!
Networking is about interacting and connecting with fellow humans. This could be in a professional or social environment. It could range from simply having a chat to a complete stranger at a weekend social event, to meeting your next client at a professional business event. The important thing to remember is no matter who you’re speaking to and where you are, the aim is to build rapport with the person you’re interacting with, in aim of being positively remembered.
Empower, don’t compete!
We all know the essence of business is establishing ways to compete with similar businesses in the market. Competition is what it’s all about right? It’s inevitably one of the core features of reaching your profit goals. However, I suggest taking a different approach to competition and treating it as a smaller piece of the success pie.
Start focusing on your positive interactions with people and genuinely empowering the intelligent women in your business network.
Is your friend launching a new business? Empower her by offering some start-up tips.
Did your fellow networker make a huge booboo and post the incorrect information on their business’ Facebook page? Empower her by kindly and privately pointing it out so that she can fix it pronto!
After all, helping and supporting someone in time of need is good karma- you never know when you’ll need a business favour in return!
Expand your horizons
This is best described through one of my favourite sayings in the world:
“Don’t be afraid to shine a little brighter darling!”
Likewise, my advice to you intelligent entrepreneurs out there, don’t be afraid to expand your horizons further. Think BIG. Providing business locally is rewarding and valuable, but sometimes it’s easy to get comfortable and forget that there is a great big world out there!
Look for international opportunities and embrace them. Especially international business networks (reading this article is a great start)! To do this, I highly recommend that you become familiar with modern day social media and technology. If you haven’t already, launch an Instagram, Facebook and twitter page for your business.
As one of the most effective modern day marketing tools, social media is pretty much essential for marketing your business-if you have any hope of tapping into the future generations! This is also a great way to connect with like-minded businesswomen around the world. Like their pages, contact them for advice, engage in international cross-promotion and attend international business conferences- get involved on a global scale and you’re on your way to expanding your business beyond what you initially imagined.
On that note, feel free to follow my professional Australian women’s network, ‘The Doxia Network,’ on Instagram and Facebook for wonderful opportunities to network with Australian businesswomen.
Who are your friends?
I urge you to keep in touch with as many friends, colleagues and clients as possible. For example, never EVER use the words “goodbye” or “finished” with a client or employer. This is a way of indicating that you wish to cease the relationship.
You should always keep your doors open regardless of whether a temporary client transaction is complete or you’re moving onto another employer. You just never know when you might need these people so a better way to “cease” relationships is put them on “temporary standby” by concluding with “see you again soon” or “I’ll definitely be in touch again.”
Relax, be yourself
At the end of the day, you want to be authentic. There’s no use trying to be someone you’re not just to impress others. Know your personal brand and be certain of what you seek to portray to the world. Speak to others as yourself, be confident, ask for advice and don’t be afraid to have a little banter!
Remember, there is more to life than work – people like those who are uplifting and can have a normal conversation about everyday life. Whether it be travel, personal experience or finding common ground, enjoy having a casual chat with your fellow networkers, it’s proven to be the best way to build connections and make an impression.
At the end of the day the formula is simple: if people like you, they will want to work with you.
Happy Networking Canada!
Evonne is a final year Law student who has graduated from a Bachelor of Commerce at Monash University (Melbourne, Australia) majoring in Economics and Accounting. Evonne is the Founder and CEO of Australia’s ‘The Doxia Network,’ a professional network for young Australian women and is passionate about providing Australia’s most exciting business community focused on empowering women.