A couple of weeks ago I interviewed Gary Morgan and Jeremy Snell on How To Get Corporate Clients for my monthly Webcast. Both Gary and Jeremy have built impressive client lists in less than two years and have thriving training businesses. I asked them ‘What is the biggest piece of advice you would give freelance trainers just starting out’? and the answer was ‘Network, network, network’.
The next day I received an email from someone who had listened in to the Webcast. She explained that she could see what we were saying but she hated networking, felt really uncomfortable walking into a room full of strangers and felt they were all trying to sell her stuff anyway! She felt that networking was just not for her.
If you feel like this too – and there are many freelance trainers that do, remember that networking does not have to be like this. There are many other ways you can meet and build relationships with other people without feeling stressed.
Making 1 phone call a day to one of your contacts, no agenda, just having a general catch up is networking.
Spending 30 minutes a day on Twitter engaging in conversation is networking.
Having a coffee with a different person once a week is networking. This may well be someone you have been tweeting with who you’d like to meet face to face.
Connecting 2 people who live near each other or who have complimentary businesses is networking.
Commenting on someone’s blog post and following up with an email or phone call is networking.
And I could go on …..
All of these activities don’t involve the stress and pressure of formal networking events yet they still produce the same results. And much more fun too!