Q&A with Cyndy Hoenig
Gaining new business can depend on networking
Q: How important is networking?
A: Very. Studies show 80 percent of today's jobs and sales are landed through networking.
Keep in mind that networking is about being genuine, authentic, building trust and relationships, and seeing how you can help others. He who has the relationship wins the client.
Q: How can professionals plan to network?
A: A good goal is to strive to network, in person, at least once a week. Search Twitter or look on Facebook for social events, check out meetups.com, or volunteer for a charity. And don't forget to visit your current clients to show them you care.
Q: Do you have other specific tips for networking, or socializing?
A: If you attend networking events with friends, split up once you get there. Groups are intimidating. Make sure you have your 10-second elevator speech ready to introduce yourself and what you do. Ask open-ended questions to start discussions and show others you're interested in them.
Finally, follow up quickly. Send a note, make a call, and ask if you can meet and share ideas.
PAULA BURKES, BUSINESS WRITER