Unfortunately, many business owners view networking as having to do with luck. But like most business endeavors, building and leveraging networks is all about planning and execution. By putting in the time and effort to build up networks, and having the tools to leverage these networks at the right time, business owners can provide a huge boost to their organizations. Here is a look at a few ways to leverage your value networks to innovate your organization.
Leveraging Networks for Business –
The first step to networking is to define your goals for a particular endeavor. Networking is a challenging and time-consuming process, which means it is a good idea to create goals that are achievable within a three to six-month time frame. Set up a couple of primary and secondary goals to provide greater focus to your networking efforts.
When you have come up with your goals, you will see a clearer picture of who and what to target in order to achieve said goals. But instead of targeting other organizations in a broader sense, you may want to target individuals within those organizations. Think narrow and deep, instead of being too broad with your search. Identify the individuals who make the important innovation-related decisions at the businesses you are targeting. To find the right individuals, you may have to speak with some of your contacts, or do a little digging on the organization in question.
After you have identified the individuals who could help you achieve your business goals, figure out the best approach to contact these people.
Know What You Want, And What You Can Offer –
Leveraging networks is not a one-way street. If you expect someone to scratch your back, in a business sense, you must be able to provide them with some value. Before you make contact with the individuals we identified earlier, make sure you are crystal clear on two things: what you want from them and what you can do for these people. Be up-front and concise about what you want, and do not shy away from showcasing the value you can bring to them.
It may take some time for you to get used to leveraging networks to get what you want. But each instance gets easier, especially as you begin to build your business network.