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5 Business Networking Don't s

Updated on May 24, 2011

Here are 5 things not to do when business networking. In my other article How Business Networking Opens Doors and Gets Referrals, I covered from Endless Referrals by Bob Burg the things that get referrals, what I would like to cover here from the same book are things that keep people from getting referrals. I have experienced all of these don't s in meetings and can say from first hand experience that these people do not get referrals. This list keeps people from "knowing, liking, and trusting you", which is the key to getting referrals.

  1. Networking is not handing out business cards with a short ad like: "Gimme a call I will cut you a deal." He who hands out the most business cards does not win. Handing out business cards does not bring business, it is building relationships that brings business, in fact most business cards you hand out will be thrown away until the person knows, likes, and trusts you.

  2. Networking is not a sales night to the people in the networking group. You see this a lot at Chamber of Commerce meetings. As I covered in my other article, everyone knows at least 250 people. Real networking is getting to the other person's 250 people not making the immediate sale to the one, although it is ok when it happens, but this should not be your goal.

  3. Networking is not forming partnerships, you send me a deal I will send you a deal. No one likes someone who is going to be keeping score. Partnerships may form naturally, but to start out that way is not going to get you referrals.

  4. Networking is not a social event although being sociable is part of networking. The socialites among us believe that being sociable with others will cause people to like us and thus magically give us referrals. The problem is people have to "know, like, and trust", liking is not trusting. Trust is most easily built when people know we are committed to helping them.

  5. Networking is not about getting business. No one likes someone walking around with his hand out, especially at groups where the same people meet week after week like BNI, Power Core, Chamber of Commerce Starlinks groups. Why would I look for a referral for someone who is always wanting referrals to come to them, but never gives any to me or anyone else? But everyone wants to give referrals to people who come to the meetings with referrals for them and others.

By Larry Grenevitch -


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    • Reynold Jay profile image

      Reynold Jay 

      7 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      These are good rules to follow. I've never read anything about this subject like this. I enjoyed this very much. You have this laid out beautifully and it is easy to understand. Keep up the great HUBS. Up one and Useful. Hey! I'm now your fan! RJ


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