What have my Business Networking and Sex co-authors and I concluded after 12,000 individual surveys, almost 1,000 comments and stories, numerous interviews, months of research, and years of experience? Below is a recap of the facts we uncovered.
Study Findings, Summarized
- Men and women were closer together than we expected in most areas.
- However, the perception of the difference is very dramatic. Remember: The exception becomes the perception.
- Women feel that networking has played a slightly larger role in their success than men.
- Women use a much wider variety of techniques to learn their networking skills than men do.
- Men are more likely to focus on business first than women are. Women are a little more likely to focus on building the relationship first–then the business.
- The time of day for networking was not a big issue for either gender. This was a surprise to us.
- Family obligations were more of a problem for women.
- Women definitely did not feel as safe as men in attending evening events.
- Men preferred either a structured or unstructured networking event. Women felt okay with either.
- Both men and women felt that other people were more uncomfortable networking than they felt about it themselves.
- Men felt stronger about transactional aspects of networking. Women felt stronger about relational aspects of networking.
- Men spent a little more time networking.
- Women received a higher percentage of their business from networking than men.
- The more time either men or women spent in their networking efforts, the higher the percentage of business they generated.
- The more often people used systems to track their business from networking, the more likely they were to feel that networking played a role in their success.
Men and women are not so different in the success they desire in business and networking. However, the process, the mindset, and the way of making the results happen are very different. The reason is that we have different ways of viewing the world. Some of this comes from nature and some from nurture. What it means is that if we want to be more effective, we must learn how to respect, appreciate, and embrace one another’s differences. We must understand that we can work more effectively together as a team in business and in our networks. We just need to learn to be adaptable, empathetic, sensitive, and understanding that THEY are not you.
You can and will beat the odds. The exception doesn’t have to become the perception. It can be you!
Come back next week for some advice from the whole team of Business Networking and Sex co-authors–these tips will help you achieve your highest potential when it comes to networking and guide you into your brightest future in referral marketing.