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So much of business is about who you know, not just in your immediate industry but also in your surrounding community. Connecting with the people around you can help you gather information about what your audience really wants and needs and can align you with people who share similar goals and visions. It can be a boon for both business and personal development.
Still, finding the right people to connect with can be time consuming, and you need to be reasonably sure that the connection is going to pay off. Below, seven members of the Forbes Los Angeles Business Council share their best methods for getting to know all of the right people.
1. Contribute To The Larger Conversation
The biggest part of your business is your relationships. Who are you connecting to? In public relations, we know that for our clients, our biggest piece of advice is to connect to your community. How are you contributing to the conversation that your community is having? You can generate relationships organically just by connecting with people in your community. – Nicole Dunn, Dunn Pellier Media, Inc.
2. Don’t Be Afraid To Say Hello
In such an interconnected day and age, true human connections are happening less and less. Doing business, no matter your field is about people. In order to connect with individuals in your local community, attend events, make authentic connections, meet up in person, and for God’s sake, follow up. You wouldn’t date someone who never called you back — the same is true for business. – Kelly Howard, EightSixtySouth
3. Be Friendly And Help Others
I make a point to reach out to others online or at appropriate venues and make a brief but friendly introduction. I never “sell.” Assuming there’s a commonality, I guide the conversation around topics where our interests align. I network consistently and I genuinely make an effort to be helpful without expecting anything in return. Being helpful to others has a way of helping me. – Beau Buck, Ohuku LLC
4. Say “Yes”
I make it a point to go to events, parties, and functions, even if they are an hour drive in rush hour — you know LA traffic. Some of the most valuable interactions have come serendipitously because I was in the room and saw a friend I worked with eight years ago. These experiences directly lead to business. – Robert Brill, Brill Media Company
5. Do Charity Work
I volunteer at local charities and am currently serving on the board of Project Angel Food. I have also chaired and co-chaired a variety of fundraisers and galas. I find the lasting business connections I make are with likeminded people. I definitely have discovered many through my philanthropy efforts locally. – Diana Bianchini, Di Moda Public Relations, Inc.
6. Connect Via LinkedIn And The Entrepreneurs’ Organization
It seems it’s more important for business-to-business organizations to be able to connect to other business owners. Your personal reputation and knowing other entrepreneurs helps a lot. Sometimes LinkedIn is helpful. I also highly recommend the Entrepreneurs‘ Organization (EO), of which I am a member. It is a great support group and a great place to connect with other entrepreneurs. – Dmitriy (Jim) Kolchin, ReSHARP.COM
7. Consolidate Your Core Network
I’d propose an amendment to the adage, “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know:” It’s also “what you know about them.” I’m a firm believer in prioritizing quality over quantity when it comes to relationships, and this approach has led to my building a core network of trusted friends who all aim to help each other. Know your network as well as possible so you are always in a position to help them. – Joe Gardner, VentureDevs
December 14, 2018 at 07:21AM
Forbes – Entrepreneurs