Being an entrepreneur is not easy; ask Sebastian Greenwood, a highly successful entrepreneur, and he would tell you the same. However, he would also tell you that it is very fulfilling to be able to do what you love and work for yourself, but it takes determination and constant hard work to be and stay successful.
“Without hard work, nothing grows but weeds”
Gordon B. Hinckley
Of all the skills an entrepreneur needs to have, there are some that need to be almost second nature to every entrepreneur. One such essential skill that you need to possess and hone if you are an entrepreneur – networking. What is networking and why do you need it?
What does networking mean?
In its very basic form, networking means meeting and building relationships with people. It refers to knowing and connecting to the right people, people who can help you grow as a professional or an entrepreneur.
When you start off as an entrepreneur, you may not have a great network of people. Over time, you need to build your own network, one that becomes a pool of information that you can dip into whenever required. However, for a network to be strong and really work well for you, you need to also be able to give back. What this means is, if someone has helped you out when you needed a helping hand, you need to offer your expertise if and when they require it.
4 reasons you should start networking
If you are still unsure why you should invest your time and resources in building a network, here are a few reasons to convince you:
- Increases opportunities: If you know more people working on ideas and projects similar to yours, there is a higher chance that they will approach you with opportunities. Opportunities may come in the form of referrals, partnership requests or a chance to further your networks.
- Improves knowledge base: The more people you talk to, the more knowledge you gain about the industry, the work, and the latest advancements. You may also be able to share important insights, further strengthening your network.
- Makes you visible: If more people know you professionally, it means that they know what you do. Being visibleis one of the most important things for an entrepreneur because visibility brings trust, respect, and opportunities.
- Builds confidence: Being able to talk to people about yourself and what you do help improve your confidence and better articulate your ideas and thoughts.
You can start networking by attending workshops, talks, and conferences related to your area of expertise. You can connect with acquaintances of friends and family who are great at what they do and might be able to help you grow.
An important thing to remember here is that your network is yours alone. Every person in your network has connected with you because they like you and your work and because there is a mutual trust and respect. You should be careful about who you share details of people in your network with. Unless you are absolutely certain someone will not misuse or harass a network you share, it is best not give out the information because you risk losing your network if you lose credibility and trust.
Learn more about Sebastian Greenwood:
Twitter – https://twitter.com/sebastiantruth