Thursday, April 23, 2009

What happens next? Part 2

A couple of days ago in my post on 'What happens next?' I shared the loose agenda structure that I use in One2One meetings to build towards a mutually beneficial and positive business relationship. The ultimate purpose being to develop networking advocates.

Neil Denny commented that the model is mostly easy to grasp and implement, except for the last one. "The next steps (typically connections to people & information) that you will undertake before meeting again."

He rightly points out that this calls for action and accountability and demonstrates credibility and commitment. Relationship building in networking this way requires that you give an increasing level of trust at each stage. It is very difficult to commit yourself to this and to making those connections to people & information unless you are wholeheartedly committed.

If you are committed to building trusted relationships where you give first and receive later then try & go a little deeper with your questions on the other person's background & business. Find out about their goals, the real challenges in their business and its development, their other interests and the people and businesses they know. See if you can establish the person or information that would make a real difference and make that connection.

Then you have the next steps in place. The action followed by the next session to get feedback and decide the next stage. With this approach you develop the relationship in the way that Neil described in his comment;

"We start to share commercial intimacy and build relationships that work, as opposed to more passive, and probably easier but less fruitful relationships."

Good Networking!
Dave Clarke
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