Business networking for Managing Director is one of the most effective marketing and prospecting method you can use to grow your business. But if done incorrectly, it can be harmful to your business.
Business networking is a lot more than giving out business cards. It is about building trust. For Managing Director the networking is a lot more than meeting people. It is about connecting with the right people.
Business networking is a lot more than collecting phone numbers. It is about staying in touch, about listening, addressing needs and looking for opportunities all at the same time.
Business Networking 101 - Effective Networking Strategies
It is how as a Managing Director we approach relevant business networking sessions that makes it work for us. Networking is about being authentic and genuine, building relationships and trust, and helping others. Although increased sales is the end goal, don’t participate in business networking to sell.
Build relationships and sales will follow naturally. People have to trust you before they’ll do business with you or refer you. Relationship capital is an immensely valuable part of business success. Put your energy, intention and attention on business networking.
A company's finance director or CFO has always played a key role in the growth of the business in China. Aside from the usual finance related tasks, a demanding role is played dealing with regulators, media and overseas board of directors. This more visible and public role puts more pressure on CFOs to build executive presence. Many companies have found their growth constrained when their finance director is unable to take this role. Shielding finance directors from conferences and media sessions prevents companies from maximizing the potential of their CFO.
What is Executive Presence?
Executive presence is something that is not taught in business schools, but every successful leader has it. Top executives command people's attention when they walk into a room. When there is a crisis situation, the team turns to them for an opinion. Executives with presence are placed in high profile, high stakes roles to drive the company's reputation and business forward. Executive presence can be created by looking at it from three perspectives: executive credibility, positive image projection and executive connections.
Every company has a culture that includes norms on how to dress. The key to success is to first fit in to get ahead. For an executive working in finance, dress like a finance executive: well fitting suits in blues, grays and blacks will fit in. Conservative colored shirts - blues and whites work in every situation while some executives can carry more colorful shades like pink or lilac strips. Ties allow more room for self-expression with a mix of the above colors used on various patterns like stripes, checkerboard, dots and paisley. In finance, clients expect a safe and traditional approach to business and that is reflected in the dress-sense.
Creative executives in advertising or online marketing have a greater scope to be individualistic. Out of the box thinking can be manifested in clothing colors, and hair styles. In this type of industry, where creativity Is valued, this type of presentation is acceptable. However, even in these industries as you move up the organization, executives tend to converge to a dress-code.
Look around at industry and company norms, and dress a little smarter than is expected. As Jeffrey Fox says in his book, How to become CEO, "look sharp and be sharp". Invest in quality clothing, polish your shoes and groom your hair and fingernails. Successful executive presence starts with an executive look. The first step is to look like a confident executive. Stand out by paying close attention to the small details of personal grooming.
Positive image projection
In today's world of ever-present media, sounding good is an essential part of becoming an executive with presence. Many up-and-coming executives from technical disciplines, such as finance or IT, find this daunting. This can be due to the nature of what has made them successful. A strong focus on accuracy in numbers or minute details in coding are not the best preparation for being an outgoing charismatic executive. As executives move up the ladder into key roles, like finance director, CFO and regional roles, there is an expectation that they can handle public occasions.
A CFO needs to mix with potential clients at networking functions, present a case to regulators and handle media questions. Sounding confident, presenting concisely and managing questions are all stock-in-trade for a successful executive. This can be a big jump for many managers. So many take crash-courses in working with media or work with coaches to bolster their skills and confidence in personal expression.
Start with low-risk environments and if necessary bring in a mentor or HR partner to guide the finance executive into roles and situations where they need to stand up and present a clear message. This support is essential to create self-confidence in the executive. Small wins should be recognized and regular feedback given to the executive. Also, specific suggestions to improve their projection should be an important part of this feedback.
While executive presence can seem like an intangible quality, it is essential for a leader to influence and motivate their team. One of the greatest assets that President Bill Clinton had as a leader was his ability to make every person he spoke with feel like they were special and that he really cared about them and what was on their mind. In a world of emails, text messages and tweets, it's important to remember the power of personal connection.
Executive presence can be divided into competencies and one key competency is "connecting". Executives need to project warmth to their stakeholders and especially stay accessible to their direct reports. This can be challenging for executives from technical disciplines where the focus tends to be on task rather than people. Some executives benefit from support in self-awareness using assessment centers and 360 degree feedback from their directs, peers and managers. This shows their relative strengths and behaviors that may need further development.
For example, a finance executive who needs to develop more client relationships found that their natural preference was to focus on procedures and standards. In fact, this behavior helped them become a fantastic finance manager. The executive realized that they would never be a charismatic, super-outgoing, and life-of-the-party executive, so she decided to hold small presentations for key potential clients to introduce new and changing regulations. Her ability to simply and clearly explain these changes was greatly appreciated and lead to further business opportunities. All executives should build from their strengths to create their own unique executive presence.
While life in the executive suite focuses on business strategy and numbers, building executive presence in key roles, like CFO, is essential to maintain the reputation, credibility and success of the firm. In key and complex markets, like China, this becomes a necessity rather than a nice-to-have.
Identify which networking events you should attend. Pick groups that’ll help you achieve your goals. Find venues that make sense for your business. When you register for an event, schedule it like a meeting.
Determine how often you should be networking. How many times in a week, month, or quarter? Visit as many groups as possible.
Attend events with a plan and always try to learn something new. Prepare yourself for the event. Develop open-ended questions to ignite a conversation. Bring business cards but don’t give your business card to everyone you meet. Give cards to those who ask you for it. Try to sit with strangers. Don’t forget to mingle.
Executive Search Firms - Questions To Ask Before Hiring One
Keep track of people you meet. Keep in touch with them and deepen your emotional connection. Establish a mutual beneficial relationship with other business people and potential clients/ customers. Meet with the group members individually so you get to know them better and try to build quality connections. Consider other group members as resources. focus on the group; listen and think about how you can help them. Focus on giving. Build trust within the group.
There are many ways you can succeed in network marketing and earn a decent living. But there are many more ways in which you can fail. Unless you know all the angles out there, you're not going to move forward in business. This article will explain some great tips you can use, to help your MLM campaign to flourish.
Keep track of your shortcomings and analyze why they exist.
It is important to keep track of the money you make in your network marketing strategy. There has to be a point where you choose whether or not to continue if you're not making enough profit to survive on. When that point is can be set before you sign up so you won't have any doubt in your mind if that time comes.
While you should build a site for network marketing, social networking sites can help you get started. An interesting and well written blog, frequently updated blog is a good technique to add, can give you a good start. Your network will grow more quickly if you establish your online presence.
When you're engaged in network marketing, it's imperative that you are able to visualize success as you define it. That may seem overly simple, but in network marketing, it's important to be able to visualize the future. After all, your future network size has a lot to do with how successful you will be in this field. Using positive future visualization is an accepted, and widely practiced part of network marketing.
Whether you cultivate the lists from the people who have signed up on your site or you purchase it, it is imperative that you have a rather large email list to help you continue to grow your business.
When building your network marketing business, adhering to a schedule is one of the best things you can possibly do. Setting and sticking to a schedule allows you to treat your marketing efforts like a real business and will keep you from procrastinating and taking lightly what you should be focusing on intently.
Become the leader in network marketing. Use one-of-a-kind promotions to make your creativity to create a campaign that stands out. Try to find a specific niche for your network marketing business, as you should always be as original as possible when marketing.
Avoid using network marketing jargon when you're speaking to a prospective client. There are many phrases that are commonly used within network marketing circles that will not be understood by people who do not work in such a circle. Explain terms if you must use them, but be careful not to talk down to clients.
It is important to be knowledgeable about the product you are selling. Customers are more inclined to join a higher likelihood of joining your network if it is apparent that you fully believe in your product. If you learn about the product enough, you will be able to give truthful testimonials.
Work towards a goal of making money in your sleep. Network marketing CAN lead to passive income through your downline. So make your goal to have enough referrals to pay your bills entirely. After you hit that goal, every new referral becomes "gravy", extra money for you to use for fun things like trips.
Look to the organization's leaders for ideas. Imitating these people will only help you closer to the top.
When recruiting a new lead, speak to them in terms they can understand. Instead of saying why YOU like the job, listen to what they talk about and figure out why THEY would love it. Let them know about perks that fit into their lifestyle, like a flexible schedule.
Video marketing can help you drive targeted traffic to your network marketing websites.
Help your downline by setting goals for them and giving them a reward for achieving them. Hold a contest to see who gets the most referrals in a month and reward the winner with some sort of prize, like an iPad. Building motivation through incentives is an excellent tool for your repertoire.
Look at independent distributors to see how to model yourself when using network marketing professionals are doing and learn from their successes.
When it comes to network marketing, it is extremely important to consider that your content needs to not only be easy to read but also presented in a unique way to your subscribers. This is important because you want people to be attracted to your content as well as be able to digest this information quickly before becoming bored and turning elsewhere.
Choose a network marketing company that has products of interest to you. If you have a passion for these products, you will be able to more effectively market them and may translate to them being more interested.
Avoid dictating goals to potential recruits when you are recruiting for your network marketing program. Telling recruits what they should want out of your program alienates them and destroys the trust that good recruiters develop during the recruiting process. Let your recruits express their own goals and then tell them how your program will fit them.
Everyone loves to get something great for only a bargain! Seek out network marketing company that include coupons you can give to your customers. People will be more likely to take an interest in the product if they have a bargain rate.
As you read previously, there are many ways in which you can reach success, but even more ways to fail. Network marketing is unforgiving and thus, you need to approach it with as much knowledge as you can. What you just read throughout this article, are some great ways to help you succeed. Do not take them for granted.
Do not expect to receive benefits right away. Do volunteering work for network groups to stay visible and give back. As a responsible Managing Director you must show up regularly and on time, show others how you deal with business meetings and associates. Give quality referrals and leads. If someone gives you a referral, follow up on it in a timely manner. Follow through quickly and efficiently on referrals you are given. Take a referral seriously.
Don’t spam on social networks. Use the platforms designed for Managing Director to build relationships and expand your network.
Limit self-promotion. Don’t sell. Build relationships. Be as helpful as you can. Share relevant information with others as people love to learn new things. Participate in discussions. Let others know you’re real. Be approachable. Treat your online connections just as valuable as your offline connections.