Networking: Make certain you are heard

tree_fallingWhen I first started networking I clearly remember referring ten potential clients to a friend in my network. Several weeks later I received a phone call from him thanking me for one of the referrals, it hadn’t turned into a job, but he really appreciated that I was thinking of him. As we spoke I asked him about how things were going with the other nine referrals… he had no idea what I was talking about. As we spoke it turned out that two had become clients, a couple he was still waiting to hear back from, and a handful he had never heard from. I had learned my lesson: the people you are networking with need to know when you help them, and it is your responsibility to communicate it.

Do you make a sound?
We’ve all heard the saying “If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?” We can ask the same question as it relates to networking.

The foundation for networking is helping other people, but if others don’t know that you are helping them, you are failing to be heard.

Make Some Noise
Two easy options to be heard include:

  1. Send your contact an e-mail with a note about the referral. It is easy to start with a statement like “I just wanted to let you know that you may receive a phone call from…”
  2. Call the person you referred, everyone likes receiving a call about a potential lead.

Remember that your objective is to build mutually beneficial relationships. If you were curious, here is the answer to if a tree falling in the forest makes a sound.

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One thought on “Networking: Make certain you are heard

  1. Great advice. I had literally just received such a notification this morning, which helped me reflect on your post a bit. In addition to the advice you had provided there are a couple of additional benefits – first it gives the person receiving the call notification so they’re not caught off guard. Second, knowing where the referral comes from serves as an icebreaker – you and the lead now have at least one thing in common (knowing the referrer) which can help the initial communication.

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