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Smart Networking: Attract a Following In Person and Online Paperback – November 11, 2008
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About the Author
Liz Lynch is author of 102 Secrets to Smarter Networking and founder of the Center for Networking Excellence. This company develops products, programs, and seminars that help entrepreneurs and professionals get clients, build their businesses, and accelerate their careers through networking.
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My resolution for the new year is to focus on my network--this book has provided me with renewed focus and great ideas. She has a wealth of advice for using technology to leverage your time and network. This book is one you'll refer to for quite awhile; it's filled with good ideas and solid advice.
This is a great book for the novice as well as the experienced networker.
It guides the novice through step by step networking methods as well as
Gives the reasons "why" one networks and the benefits received from networking.
The experienced networker will learn some great advanced networking methods
As well as pick up many nuggets of Gold to use at professional and social events,
On-line, and over the phone. I've been networking for years and found this book
Contains a tremendous amount of ideas I could put to use immediately.
This book is well worth your time.
Some good points:
Lynch introduces a networking mindset that many will find helpful. Sure, it's social, she says, but you might as well admit you have goals.
I enjoyed her success stories, especially her use of the Blog Squad as an example of trust-building online. (The two have now moved in new, separate directions.) Her discussion of groups is more objective than most.
The section on online marketing, especially the use of ezines and social media, is exceptionally thorough and accurate.
On the downside, I think it's increasingly difficult to use speaking as a means to build networks. More and more organizations will invite you to speak only if you belong to the organization. Frankly, this approach doesn't make sense. I would think a group would want to gain information from an expert, who might not be eligible for the group. A group of accountants, for instance, would benefit from hearing a talk by an Internet marketing pro.
The only missing topic was a discussion of who will best benefit from which kinds of networking. Lynch mentions that her web designer used BNI. I've found that certain fields benefit from BNI more than others; if your fellow members easily understand your service, and know why it's important, you may do well.
Leads groups like BNI almost deserve a separate chapter. Lynch is right when she warns that groups vary a great deal and they're pretty intense. One challenge I had was that I don't necessarily want to recommend fellow group members. And if you're not actively connected to your community, you will have trouble fulfilling your group obligations.
And while experts like to claim that anyone can learn to network, I'm convinced that some people are more naturally skilled than others. You need a certain temperament or else a combination of motivation and discipline to learn to act as though you had that temperament. It's easier online because you have time to strategize; you can even hire someone to ghost your networking for you (and it's done all the time).
That said, I'd have no qualms about recommending Smart Networking for business and career growth. I rated the book "5 stars" because it's one of the best I've seen on the treacherous subject of networking.