Networking is a powerful tool.


Networking is a powerful tool.

Just to be clear, we are NOT talking about running miles of cable from one computer to the next and we are NOT talking about recruiting people for a business opportunity. What we ARE talking about is recognizing, developing and profiting from your NETWORK of contacts, no matter what business you are in.

We all know more people than we think we do. Surveys have shown that, by the time we graduate college, most of us know about 250 other people. The Internet has changed all of that.

That number goes way up when you think of people you know via the Internet. Let's look at five ways to develop your network of contacts, online and offline, to help skyrocket your business, no matter what that business is. Make a list of the people you know and let's get ready to go!


The first step is to let your group of contacts know what you are doing. Honesty is the key here. HELP them see the next level of relationship where you can be of help to each other in a business setting. If they are going to open their contacts to you, and you to them, you must both be comfortable.

And don't push it. If they hesitate, back off.


Ask them how you can help them. Many times in life and business we get by giving. HONESTLY offering your help to them without asking anything in return will set the stage for a mutually beneficial relationship. Honesty is the key. If you have less than noble motives, stay away.


Be involved on the Net. The most efficient way to make new contacts is over the Internet. There are thousands of chats, newsgroups and forums out there. Almost certainly there are some on YOUR topic. Get in the swim and meet new people.


Develop credibility. Here we go giving before we get again. While in the chats and on the forums answer EVERY question that you can. Don't answer if you don't know. But if you DO know, make your voice heard often. Be sure and let them know how to reach you and, over time, they will.


Be in for the long haul. If you are not building relationships for the long haul, people will sense that and back away. Let people know that even though many things may change over the years, you won't.

If you begin with these five basics you will start to develop your own network of contacts that, over time, will mean you may NEVER HAVE TO FIND PROSPECTS AGAIN. The math is straightforward. Each contact you develop who shares even one person with you is opening you up to not 1, but 250 other potential prospects.

Remember to be honest and up front about your intentions and YOUR network of contacts will grow up to produce a bumper crop.

About the author: Maryan Bridge has used the principles here to make her business a success. You can too. To contact Maryan visit her website today at and see how professional networking has worked for her.

Author: Maryan Bridge