Gratitude and generosity are key elements of successful networking efforts.
What are you thankful for? And who has helped you achieve that? Have you thanked them recently?
With Thanksgiving on Thursday, a little networking reminder to be generous. Take a minute to reach out to someone in your network who has helped you in some way, and give thanks (without expectation or need or seeking anything in return).
Don’t just take my word on this (though I’d be grateful if you did), pay close attention to what Erin Newkirk (one of the networking gurus featured in Build Your Dream Network) has to say on networking and generosity:
- It’s all about gratitude. Gratitude takes many forms, but it all starts from the heart. What works for me is to say thank you and to be thankful. It’s how I end almost every conversation and oftentimes how I introduce myself or say hello. (“Hello, my name is Erin and I am grateful to be here. Thank you for having me.”) It’s about thinking during every experience and every day—the bad ones and the good ones—“what am I grateful for right now?” Because there is always something to be grateful for. You learn something from everything. Gratitude can be scary. Gratitude means opening yourself up to others.
- Give before you get. The smartest people I know start building relationships before they “need” them. And they do so with a clear, kind heart. Offer up help before you need or even expect a thing. Help someone you are qualified to help and find fulfillment in that.
- Keep in touch. This doesn’t always mean a note or a call. It could mean buying someone a cup of coffee—either in per-son or sending them a five-dollar Starbucks gift card along with a sweet sentiment. Sending flowers is often a day brightener. Keeping in touch could also be through gestures, like endorsing skills on LinkedIn or reposting thought provoking articles.
(Find more of Erin’s networking insights in her #BYDN interview which starts at page 16).
Some thanks from me. To all of those who have purchased, read, reviewed, recommended and shared Build Your Dream Network – thank you! And no, I actually can’t thank you enough as by your actions, you’re fueling my dream career and helping me build my dream.
This post originally appeared in BUILD YOUR DREAM (my weekly newsletter). Don’t miss my next musing by signing up to get BUILD YOUR DREAM in your inbox.