Networking and interpersonal skills: How are the two related?

The quality of your life is the quality of your relationships.
Tony Robbins

To be successful in your career or in business these days is becoming increasingly more of a challenge.

Businesses have changed considerably, and global expansion has created large multinational companies that often have a matrix management system rather than a traditional tiered hierarchy of management. Products now come to the market faster, industries are expanding and partnerships are more common.
 
All this means it’s more important than ever for those wanting to advance their careers to have the ability to create meaningful professional relationships. Digital methods of communication will only take you so far. In the end, it all comes down to your ability to create a professional network and build trust within those relationships.
 
To do this, you must have well developed interpersonal skills
Interpersonal skills are the life skills we use every day when we communicate with others. It’s what we say, how we say it, our body language and our ability to read body language in others.
 
Interpersonal skills are a mixture of three key areas of talent:

  1. Leadership – your ability to make decisions, delegate work, motivate others and mentor others

  2. Networking – how you communicate, your ability to build a network and your self confidence

  3. Teamwork – how you work with others, collaborate, delegate and participate in group work

All three areas and the abilities you have within them are what make up your interpersonal skills.
 
The great news is – you already have interpersonal skills. They are skills we develop subconsciously during childhood, and stem from the way we make friends, talk to others, ask for what we want and help others in need.
 
Refining and enhancing your interpersonal skills is essential for any kind of professional success. It’s important that you learn to listen, become aware of the way you speak to others, understand where you might be going wrong with your communication and remember the importance of non-verbal communication.
 
Improving your interpersonal skills will ultimately improve your ability to create professional networks and relationships, and will fast track you to career success. Networking is a learned behaviour, so take a look at our Corporate Training programs to find the course that best suits your needs.  Or consider a Lunch & Learn session for your team here.

Happy Netships!
Julia

Julia Palmer, a respected Networking Strategist and Chief Executive of the Business Networking Academy, presenting and training on how to create and manage networks that work. To learn more visit www.juliapalmer.com & www.BusinessNetworkingAcademy.com.au

Posted on April 27, 2017 .

How to build a powerful network of teams

"Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other"  Abraham Lincoln

The organisational structure of modern day companies has changed considerably over the last decade. I have been teaching networking and relationship management skills since 2005 and my clients are increasingly being forced to move more rapidly, adapt more quickly and evolve at a faster rate than ever, and if they can’t do this, they are being left behind.  

One of the most important changes being seen in this organisational shuffle is the demise of the standard company hierarchy and the rise of networks of teams. Instead of a company being led by a CEO, supported by a General Manager and having tiers of managers and employee levels below that, we’re now seeing networks of teams who work together more cohesively.  

By working in teams, individual and team goals can be shared for everyone to see, and accountability becomes more apparent. This sense of accountability is a huge step away from the “I’m just doing it because my manager told me to” way of thinking, and is critical for team and corporate effectiveness.

How can you build a powerful network of teams in your organisation?

1.     Embrace change. If you have inefficient systems and processes in place simply “because we’ve always done it that way”, you might as well close your business now. The digital demands of consumers in 2017 mean that you must transform and change to remain current.

2.     Shuffle your talent. When you place your managers and employees in different projects and ask them to perform different functions, they become more agile and more valuable.

3.     Create a performance group. Ask the group to study and analyse other high performing teams. By examining their titles, reward system and career paths, you can introduce new concepts into your organisation.

4.     Go digital. Take a look at some of the commonly used communication methods businesses use for their employees to share information. Software like Basecamp, Podio, Zoom, Trello and Asana can improve productivity and can be more efficient than the standard, slow methods of communication such as email.

5.     Give feedback. Regular feedback to your employees with rewards and recognition has so many benefits. Employees feel empowered, motivated and are more likely to set goals and achieve more. They feel valued and this will be reflected in increased productivity.

Working in teams cohesively is going to feature more prominently in businesses of the future, and leading organisations will make it easier for employees to build their careers and have more job satisfaction. It’s exciting to think about what the future may hold.

Keep up with modern day changes to business by building a powerful network of teams in your company.  Learn more about the Lunch & Learn sessions for your team here.

Julia Palmer, a respected Networking Strategist and Chief Executive of the Business Networking Academy, presenting and training on how to create and manage networks that work. To learn more visit www.juliapalmer.com & www.BusinessNetworkingAcademy.com.au

 

Posted on April 20, 2017 .

The boost to business networking you need right now

If the opportunity doesn't knock, build a door!
Milton Berle

If you speak to anyone with a highly successful career, they’ll say that business networking played a huge role in getting them where they are. I certainly would never have had the opportunities I had without my amazingly supportive network!

That said, I also believe that networking can be a complete waste of time if you’re not approaching it in the right manner and most people I meet need a lot of help to be more strategic and successful when networking.
 
If networking doesn’t come easily to you, or you’ve tried it with limited success, follow our business networking tips to give your career progression a massive boost.
 

1. Invest in professional networking coaching. This will save you countless hours of going to event after event and trying new techniques that might not give you any results. Networking training will teach you exactly what works and how to do it, so you can get stuck right into using methods that work. 

2. Offer help wherever you can. Networking is all about sharing ideas, expertise and information so you can build trust in the new relationships you make. Business connections need to be mutually beneficial, so connect with people you can help and who can help you. 

3. Be visible and approachable. If no one knows about your skills, experience and what you can do, you’ll be invisible. Once you’ve made a business connection, be sure to keep in touch via phone, email, social media and in person. People will only contact you if they feel comfortable approaching you. 

4. Look at the long-term picture and think big. When you initially make a new business connection, you may not think there’s any benefit to you in maintaining that relationship. But situations and circumstances change all the time, and a connection that may not seem valuable initially could turn into your best connection in a year or two. Be sure to nurture every relationship just in case! 

5. Ask and follow up. If you never ask, you'll never know! Be proactive and ask for an interview, ask for an introduction and ask for advice. Don’t be afraid to follow up if your initial response is not answered. Emails often get missed and return phone calls can be forgotten, so it’s important to follow up.

The purpose of business networking is to learn, share, be visible and establish key connections that can help you further your career.
 
If you’d like some professional networking training to help you get the most out of your networking efforts, call us on 1300 785 815 to find out about the training options most suited to you.  
Or you can check out our training here.

Happy Netships!
Julia

Julia Palmer, a respected Networking Strategist and Chief Executive of the Business Networking Academy, presenting and training on how to create and manage networks that work. To learn more visit
www.juliapalmer.com & www.BusinessNetworkingAcademy.com.au

Posted on March 29, 2017 .

How to further your career with effective communication skills

A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.

Albert Einstein

It goes without saying that if you want to succeed in business or further your career, excellent communication skills are vital. Being an outstanding communicator sets you apart from others and helps you become a more effective employee, which is a stepping-stone to promotion and career advancement.
 
But even when you have great communication skills, it’s not always easy to know how and when to apply those skills. Here are some things to keep in mind when you’re looking for the recognition you deserve.
 

  1. When you start a new job or work on a new project, identify the key people who can potentially have an impact on your position. Establish a relationship with them, collaborate, interact and set your goals and expectations of one another.

 

  1. Put together a schedule for regular meetings with your manager so you can discuss your workload, priorities, progress, gain feedback and set goals. Taking a proactive approach to your role and achievements shows your enthusiasm and dedication to the company.

 

  1. Make contact with others in the organisation that you don’t work with directly (informal networking events are a great way to do this). This will give you a broader perspective of your position within the company and can help you become aware of new opportunities that may arise.

 

  1. Don’t stop networking just because you have a job. The best time to network is when you’re employed! Be sure to network inside and outside of your organisation, as this allows you to make new contacts and develop new skills. Don’t be worried that networking outside of your organisation could be perceived as disloyalty. You could in fact bring new opportunities to the company as a whole.

 

  1. Be proactive in asking for a performance review. Most managers hate this task and avoid it at all costs, even when regular reviews are scheduled. Without these reviews, you’re likely to feel unsure about your position, your performance and your job security, so take the initiative and make sure these regular discussions happen.

 
The more people you can expose yourself to, the greater your chance of moving up the corporate ladder. As you enhance and demonstrate your communication skills, you will increase your reputation and recognition as a valuable employee within your company. This is the fastest way for a chance to furthering your career. 
 
If you or your team need some further training on business networking, contact us to arrange a lunch and learn at your office.
 
Happy Netships!
Julia

Julia Palmer, a respected Networking Strategist and Chief Executive of the Business Networking Academy, presenting and training on how to create and manage networks that work. To learn more visit www.juliapalmer.com & www.BusinessNetworkingAcademy.com.au

Posted on March 17, 2017 .

Kick-start the New Year by boosting your networking skills

You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interesting in you.

Dale Carnegie

Hoping the New Year has been good to you so far! It’s been a time of reflection for me so I wonder, how many of you have had a break over the Christmas period and set yourself some career goals for 2017? Perhaps now is the right time for you to work towards a promotion, boost your revenue, find a new role or even start your own business?
 
No matter what your goals are, your networking skills are going to play an important role in helping you achieve those goals. The better and more refined your skills are, the greater your chance of networking with the right people in the right way.
 
One of the best investments you can make in your career is professional networking training. If you’re serious about striving towards the goals you set for yourself for 2017, then boosting your networking skills should be high on your list of priorities.
 
How to enhance your networking skills

  • Create a networking ‘toolbox’ that’s full of phrases, tips and techniques you can refer to whenever you need it. Write down the key points, and you can carry them on a small piece of paper to refer to occasionally. With time, you’ll be able to remember what’s in your toolbox and pull the right tools out instantly when they are needed.

 

  • Practice your introductions with friends, family and colleagues. One stock standard ‘elevator pitch’ won’t be suitable for everyone you meet, so have a few up your sleeve. help my clients develop a few different introductions depending on the particular product or service hat relates to each audience.

 

  • Have the confidence to be proactive and approach other people. Sitting in the room hoping for someone to come up to you isn’t the best tactic. Your ‘toolbox’ will give you the confidence you need.

 

  • Balance the conversations you have with others. If you find yourself doing all the talking, take a moment to let the other person contribute to the conversation too. If you’ve hardly said a word, jump in whenever you get a chance.

 

  • Work out a way to politely end a conversation that is going nowhere. You’ll quickly know if you have a connection with the person you’re speaking to, so if they’re not a good fit, move on. 

Great networking skills can be learned. If you’re interested in a professional networking orkshop  that will teach you these skills and more, take a look at our next half day Business Networking Skills Workshop on 14th March 2017. 
 
Julia Palmer, a respected Networking Strategist and Chief Executive of the Business Networking Academy, presenting and training on how to create and manage networks that work. To learn more visit www.juliapalmer.com & www.BusinessNetworkingAcademy.com.au

 

Posted on January 25, 2017 .