In today’s modern business world, people are working together to crowdsource products, services, or ideas in a team or in an organization creating something together through a joint effort. Therefore, I am asking you to co-create a book with us.
Please watch the video below then take the survey. In addition, feel free to share the survey on your social media pages with as many people as you would like.
I am working on a new book with Frank De Raffele and Dawa Phillips called The Third Paradigm. We are so very close to reaching our goal of 4,000 survey responses and would love to have you as part of the book. All ages welcome. Click on this link to take the 4-minute survey and be part of the book:
As an added bonus, here is the draft opening to the book:
Chapter One: The Three Paradigms
We live in an age of sweeping skepticism. Conflict is pervasive. Balanced discourse is a thing of the past and pundits tell us what’s wrong with society. People complain like it’s an Olympic event, and the marketplace obsesses over the massive problems in the world. Negativity seems to be the norm.
We, however, believe there is hope. There is an answer and it does not rest with the problems. It rests with a focus on solutions. When people focus on problems – they become world-class experts on “the problem.” When they focus on solutions, they become world-class experts on “the solution.” We believe the “solution” lies within The Third Paradigm.
As a reference point, a paradigm is a philosophical framework or discipline within which theories and laws are formulated. We believe we are entering the era of the Third Paradigm. Let us take you on a short journey through the three paradigms before we talk more about the solution.
What happens after competition and after collaboration, that’s the third paradigm.
Please participate in this survey about co-creation. I need your help.
Thank you to everyone who participated in a previous survey. I need your feedback again.
I am working on a new book about people working together to crowdsource products, services, or ideas in a team or in an organization. Furthermore, it is about creating something together through a joint effort.
There are only 10 questions and it will only take a few minutes to complete. Therefore, I’d really appreciate if you’d participate. I will need about 4000 total responses. In addition, Feel free to share the survey on your social media pages with as many people as you would like. All ages welcome. However, we particularly need responses from people under 30. Plus, please email this video link too.
We are using the results from the survey to help talk about the third paradigm in the new book.
Recently, I took the opportunity to gather almost 3,400 survey responses from business people around the world. I gave them a list of almost 20 different characteristics on networking and I asked them to pick the top behaviors they’d like to see. From those responses, I have identified the top characteristics of what people believe makes a great networker and have listed them here. Each one of the characteristics below ties into the notion of “farming” not “hunting.” It’s about building mutually beneficial business relationships. Only then will you succeed in creating a powerful, personal network.
Sincere/Authentic. You can offer the help, the thanks, the listening ear, but if you are not sincerely interested in the other person, they will know it! Those who have developed successful networking skills convey their sincerity at every turn. One respondent stated that “it’s all about the authenticity” that someone shows you. We have all seen people who are seemingly good at networking but lack sincerity. Faking it isn’t sustainable.
Follows Up. If you offer opportunities, whether a simple piece of information, a special contact, or a qualified business referral, to someone who consistently fails to follow up, you’ll soon stop wasting your time with this person. One respondent said that when it comes to networking, “the fortune lies in the follow up” and many people just “don’t follow up anymore.”
Trustworthy. One respondent said best when she said: “it doesn’t matter how successful the person is, if I don’t trust them, I don’t work with them.” When you refer someone you are putting your reputation on the line. You have to be able to trust your referral partner and be trusted in return. Neither you nor anyone else will refer a contact to someone who can’t be trusted to handle it well.
Approachable. One respondent said that people “will forget what you said and what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel”. Effective networking starts with approachability – everything else listed above follows from this.
As a young man, I studied under Warren Bennis, who was at the time, the world’s leading expert on leadership. He taught me that understanding the “characteristics” of a great leader is important. However, what is even more important, is understanding how to apply those characteristics. He told me; “know what you are good at and work to enhance those skills. Know what you’re not good at and surround yourself with people who can help you improve those skills”.
As with leadership, I believe that networking skills are very important. What’s even more important, however, is working to improve them and learning how to use them effectively. That’s what really counts.
What are the Top Three Characteristics?
Check out my blog from January for the top three characteristics of what people believe makes a great networker.
I’ve been writing about networking for more than 30 years! After all these years, I still find that there are many misnomers about what business networking should, or shouldn’t be about. Many people think that business networking is basically about direct selling. Others think that is about relationship building. What do you think makes a great networker?
In this video (click on the graphic above to access the video), I speak with Charlie Lawson, networking expert and National Director of BNI® UK & Ireland, to unfold the differences between men and women in networking. While men tend to be more transactional in the way they network, women are more relational and understanding these differences can really be an advantage when it comes to achieving success from your networking efforts.
During a survey of 12,000 people, it was found that those who are more relational gain more business and are overall more proficient networkers. However, just because women are more likely to generate new business through referrals, this doesn’t mean that only they should have a place in networking groups. In order to have the most successful networking group possible, there needs to be a great amount of diversity. It’s ideal to have a blend of different people because that diversity is an important aspect of successful networking.
The more diverse a group is, the more connected it becomes. When networking groups become more connected, deeper relationships are formed, ultimately leading to more referrals and greater success.
Do you or your networking group have any good tactics for seeking out a diverse array of professionals with whom to network? If so, please share them in the comment forum below. If not, make it your goal this week to come up with some ways to do so–you have nothing to lose and a whole lot of untapped potential for new referrals to gain!
In this third installment of the “Why People Resist Networking” Video Series, I discuss another popular theme surrounding why people tend to resist networking – impatience. If new networkers don’t see immediate payoff from their efforts, they become impatient, inevitably resulting in failure early on in the networking process.
Quite often, people simply don’t understand the value of taking time to build fruitful relationships and, like it or not, fruitful relationships are the cornerstone of effective networking.
In this short video, I show a Power Point slide which offers eye-opening proof of the payoff that comes from being patient and consistently putting in the necessary time each week to diligently and strategically build networking relationships.
I highly encourage you to watch the video to find out why you owe it to yourself (not to mention the business you’ve put so much hard work into) to adopt a systematic and patient approach to networking. Remember, when you approach networking like a long distance marathon runner, you will reap sweet rewards; if you approach it like a sprinter, simply trying to reach the end as quickly as possible, chances are you’ll end up breaking your ankle (so to speak) and you will have failed before you ever have a chance to even reach the finish line–needless to say, there’s no prize in that.
After watching the video, I’d love for you to leave your feedback, thoughts, and/or comments in the comment forum below. I would particularly like to hear your networking success stories (e.g., connections you never thought you’d be able to make yet achieved through your diligent networking efforts, business growth statistics attesting to the positive impact your networking efforts have made on your business, etc.). Thanks!
Nielsen recently did a survey regarding people’s “trust” in various forms of advertising (see the graph below).
Remarkably, the two top categories of trust involved word of mouth! All other forms of advertising were substantially lower than the top two (word-of-mouth approaches). Furthermore, 82% of all forms of advertising (other than word of mouth) showed that more than half of all people didn’t trust that form of advertising much at all!
The media often asks me why networking is so important. I think the graph below clearly demonstrates why networking is so important for business growth and success. It’s important to note that I believe in advertising; I also believe that referrals and networking are a form of advertising and I’ve been saying for many years that business networking (i.e., referral marketing) is the most cost effective form of advertising.
This independent study clearly confirms the power of word-of-mouth advertising. Weigh in here – what are your thoughts on the matter?
I recently co-authored an article about the return on investment (ROI) of membership in BNI (the organization I founded back in 1985). My readers here may find some of the results interesting:
The average amount of business gained from referrals in the last 12 months was $37,055. When asked about further orders they had received as the multiplier effect of participation, members were able to think of, on average, an additional $17,668 per year of membership.
Combining closed business in the last 12 months with the average value of 2nd and 3rd generation referrals in a year showed the true value of a seat as $54,720 per year. On average, members who were involved in the group for 7 years generated $383,038 since they joined, thereby underpinning the lifetime value of participation.
An associate of mine is conducting an independent study regarding ROI for any networking organization. He will share some of the results with me and I will publish them here on my blog. Please take a few moments to take the short survey (it will only take 3 or 4 minutes).
*** Take the SURVEY HERE ***
After you take the survey, post a message here with any questions that YOU would like to see in a future survey that I’m doing or recommending (like this one).
BusinessNetworking.com blog readers across the globe are invited to participate in a current survey being conducted on business networking and volunteering.
As a member of the Board of Trustees at the University of La Verne, I have been given the opportunity to invite you to take part in this study on business networking and volunteering which is being conducted by the University of La Verne’s Darla Drendel for a doctoral dissertation.
The results will be shared here on BusinessNetworking.com upon completion of the doctoral dissertation and they may also be incorporated into some of my upcoming material, likely in one of my books or articles.
This survey is extremely brief, taking only a few minutes to complete, and it will be an important tool in understanding the relationship between business networking and civic engagement. As a BusinessNetworking.com reader, your input is of great value as you, by nature, likely have plenty of experience participating in both of these arenas.
If you have questions about the survey, please contact Darla Drendel (DarlaDrendel@Yahoo.com) or Marcia Godwin, Ph.D., Director of the University of La Verne’s Institutional Review Board (MGodwin@LaVerne.Edu).
Thank you so much to all of you who take a few minutes to complete this survey–I consider your support a personal favor and I am very appreciative.
Last week I posted a summary of the conclusions my Business Networking and Sexco-authors and I came to after surveying over 12,000 people and conducting months of research. I promised that this week I would post advice for both women and men in achieving networking success with the opposite sex so below I’ve outlined some key tips Frank De Raffele, Hazel Walker, and I put together.
We Say . . .
We’re all trying to get to the same place. It will be much more profitable for all of us if we can help each other along the way. Here are a few things to guide your success in networking with the complementary gender:
For the Ladies
Don’t get stuck in the credibility phase of the VCP Process®. Ask for what you want.
When asking for help, communicate clearly exactly what it is that you want.
Make time for networking.
When speaking to men, try to impress them and share your accomplishments.
When spoken to inappropriately, speak up about it immediately.
Dress for business at business events.
Put systems in place to track your business.
Stay in contact with and follow up on leads, referrals, and acquaintances made.
Diversify your networks.
Remember that networking is ultimately about getting business, so ask for both business and referrals.
Convey an image to others that you are a serious businessperson, in all that you do.
Get educated about referral systems.
Don’t lump all men into the same group.
For the Guys
Slow down and build the relationship.
Work through the VCP Process® in the proper order of its phases. Don’t race through the credibility phase.
Make and maintain eye contact.
Listen and ask relational questions.
Don’t assume that women don’t take their business seriously.
Don’t hit on women at networking events.
Edit what you are about to say, using filters to sift out what is not business appropriate.
Stay in contact with and follow up on leads, referrals, and acquaintances made.
Stay informed about the best, most current, and cutting-edge networking practices.
Develop and use systems for your networking activities.
Make time for networking.
Speak to relate, not just to impress.
Remember that women are at networking events for business gain, just as you are.
The difference between the genders when it comes to networking is a great advantage, not a disadvantage. By following the tips we have outlined above, you should be able to develop more productive relationships with members of both sexes. Also, be sure to visit www.BusinessNetworkingAndSex.com if you would like to follow the latest developments on the subject of business networking and the genders.
In this short video, presented by Applied Transformation, Inc., Roger Green asks me about my view on the idea that high cost education doesn’t necessarily prepare students for the real world.
In answering him, I talk about my feelings on where business networking fits into the world of formal education and I share some statistics about the true effectiveness of networking which, to me, are mind boggling; I also tell a personal story about having lunch with the Dean of Business at a prominent university and how his words to me speak volumes about the current position business networking holds in the world of higher learning.
What are your personal feelings on where business networking currently fits into, or currently should fit into, the world of formal education? Did you study business at the university level? If so, what was your experience?–Did you receive any education about networking while you were working on your degree(s)? Please share your thoughts/experiences in the comments section.
What have my 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
91.4% of the respondents said that “networking has played a role in their success.”
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.