You are only as good as your network.
They are the one’s who vouch for you, they are the one’s who represent you, and ultimately will refer business back to you. Now I keep mentioning the word YOU. But really it is never about you, it is about helping your network. Pay it forward and if you have built the right network, it should come right back. This approach is how I do business, and how I generally find new clients.
I’m not saying you have to go out of your way for everyone you meet, but have a sense of pride in helping others. This will be noticed and the rewards will be reaped later in life. These words of advice can be used in and out of the office, at a family dinner or just running into an old friend at the grocery store.
It is important to verbalize what you want out of a relationship, especially if it is a business relationship. Being up front about expectations and desires helps build trust between clients, friends and colleagues. Also, if you don’t mention what you want, than how will you ever get it?
No, it’s not being selfish, it’s being honest. It’s not wasting someone else’s time. The power of networking is the ability to find mutually beneficial agreements and trades to satisfy the goal of each party. Start the bartering by referring a new lead or suggesting a better service offering. People are much more willing to help you out if you have already made an effort for them and if they are not, then we are back to the beginning.