Business Building

  • Top 7 Benefits of Networking

     

    Networking is a skill like any other you learn for your business, but sadly, it’s generally not taught in school. Typically, it’s something people pick up as they go, and speaking from personal experience, unless you’ve been given good advice or examples, chances are that you’ll make mistakes along the way. Keep making them, and those mistakes can cost you opportunities if they aren’t corrected.

    The benefits of networking is the first part of a series about networking. Over the five articles, you’ll learn what networking is and why you should do it; where to find events and opportunities to do it; how to prepare for it; what to do when you get there; and how to follow up to make your efforts worth it.

    What is Networking?

    The definition of networking isn’t really what people think it is in real use. Many people will tell you it’s showing up at an event, collecting a lot of business cards, talking about your business to anyone who will listen, and maybe making a pitch if they saw a “perfect in”.

    Wikipedia defines it as “…a socioeconomic business activity by which businesspeople and entrepreneurs meet to form business relationships and to recognize, create, or act upon business opportunities, share information and seek potential partners for ventures.” The first “definition” is just about the opposite of what you want to do, and the second one sounds pretty dry. But Wikipedia does touch on the real kernel of truth: relationships.

    networking colleagues

    In practical use in the real world, it can be summed up like this:

    • Networking is a long game that goes far beyond where you initially meet your connections. It’s not just about landing a job or finding your next employee. It’s something you should be doing your whole career, and it will help you build your career.
    • In networking, it’s not about the quantity of introductions of yourself you make, but it’s the quality of the relationships you build (which will help you get quality introductions).
    • Growth is key benefit in networking. This happens both personally and professionally by what you receive from others, but more importantly, what you generously give.

    Top 7 Benefits of Networking to You and Your Business

    1. Networking is an important factor in success.

    Many people who are the most successful in business (maybe the ones that make it look so easy and seem to get all the breaks?), have tapped into a strong network of like-minded individuals that are helping them along the way. You can access that kind of help if you think of it as an investment by putting your time and energy into creating mutually helpful connections. Think of it as part of your career development.

    First, you have to be visible in your community. You have to get out there and connect with people. It’s not called net-sitting. It’s not called net-eating. It’s called NETWORKING. You have to work at it.  — Dr. Ivan Misner of BNI

    2. Meet influential people.

    They say “It’s not just what you know, it’s who you know.” I have one more thing to add to that. “It’s not just who you know, but who knows you.” And I don’t just mean getting an introduction and exchanging cards. That’s the tip of the iceberg, and it’s going to take some time to explore it all. Once you have made some connections, the doors can open to meet people many levels above you in business. As a result, meeting these influencers happen from mutual connections, and it’s a big benefit of networking.

    3. Personal recommendations are a lot more likely.

    There’s nothing like meeting face-to-face, time and again, to really get to know another person. It allows trust to build. Once someone knows you well, they are more likely to help you, perhaps by facilitating a meeting with a higher level person in a company that could direct business or a job your way. This can make all the difference if you’re job-hunting, want to make a career change, or starting a new business. Personal recommendations come with the trust you build in knowing someone well.

    Networking event group

    4. Make real friendships.

    People that you meet at networking events, especially those that are in the same field, understand what other people in your life may not (for instance, what a company going public means, or the frustrations of client troubles). Once you get to know each other better, you can be each other’s sounding board, cheerleader, and support system. It’s the logical next step in forming a friendship, and continuing it could be lifelong. After all, you already have a lot in common!

    Call it a clan. Call it a network. Call it a tribe. Call it a family. Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one. — Jane Howard

    5. Allows you to help others.

    You should approach networking with the mindset of “What can I offer?” rather than “What’s in it for me?”, otherwise you will limit your success. This is the chance for you to be as generous as you possibly can, because helping others is the way to not only pay it forward, but to make an impression that lasts. Forming a mentorship (whether you’re on the giving or receiving side) could be invaluable to your career development.

    6. Opens new resources.

    No one can know everything, but communicate regularly with enough people and you are more likely to tap into the latest news of what’s happening. People you meet in networking will have recommendations about things like business coaches, professional development opportunities, the best people to hire for a job or outsourcing, early information about job openings or shakeups in the industry, books to read, and workshops to attend… The list really can go on, but let’s leave it at knowing that there’s a wealth of information out there, and people will share it with you.

    People networking at event

    7. Boosts your self-esteem and self-confidence.

    There are plenty of readers that will identify as introverts and convince themselves that that means they can’t meet people easily, therefore networking isn’t for them. Networking is for everyone in business. Regular attendance is important, so faces will become familiar over time. Remember, you’re there to be helpful. For instance, you’ll probably be asked for advice, because your opinion will matter. There will almost certainly be an opportunity to offer your skills and expertise because people are valued for what they bring. It may be out of your comfort zone, but that’s where the growth is.

     

    You may be wondering…

    …why I didn’t mention some other benefits that seem obvious, like getting new leads, making sales, hiring an employee, or booking a client. These are all things that can happen at networking events. Of course, the underlying agenda of everyone is to grow their business, but I argue that the deeper nature of business networking is building each other up as we build our careers. In improving ourselves and helping others do the same, the rest will follow. And we won’t have to do it on our own.

    Nothing is more expensive than a missed opportunity. — H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

    To sum up, this and the upcoming articles about networking are written in the hopes of saving others from making the same mistakes I’ve made. For instance, I absolutely know that I’ve missed opportunities to create real connections with people who could have helped me greatly, and all because I didn’t understand how to use networking the right way. I know it’s never too late to develop new skills, so if you’re up for it, follow along. Up next in the series – How to Prepare for Successful Networking. Get it right in your inbox, along with all the upcoming articles. (scroll down to subscribe)

     

     

     


    Choose your favorite images from the article and quotes to save and share from any of the below.

     

    networking pin image - 7 top benefits of networking in businessnetworking pin image - how networking can make all the difference to your careerNetworking pin image - 7 important reasons you need networking to be really successful

    networking pin image with quote - it's not called net-sitting. it's not called net-eating. it's called networking. you have to work at it. ivan misner

    networking pin image with quote - call it a clan. call it a tribe. call it a network. call it a family. whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.

    networking pin image quote - nothing is more expensive than a missed opportunity - h jackson brown

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

  • 10 Things You Can Start Today | Set Up For Success

     

     

    This is the second post in a Personal Development Series. This article gives valuable tips to set yourself up to be successful in business, in achieving personal goals… really in anything you want to pursue.

     


    woman leaning against a wall with an orange shirt that reads Slay Mode

    Personal development is about taking time to make changes in ourselves or our lives. It’s an investment of time, energy, thought, emotions and intentions to improve ourselves and our lives

    Sometimes we want to be successful with something so badly, but get stuck in the early stages. There are times when we work hard but need some help. And how do we know that we’ve done something successfully? 

     

    Here’s 10 life hacks to help set yourself up for success and you can start today!

     

    Establish your goals.

    First, make your goals reasonable. Like planning to run a marathon in a year rather than in 3 months when you’ve never run more than a mile.

    Secondly, make them measurable. If you’re trying to lose weight, you have a number in mind. A blogger will look for pageviews or subscribers. A sales rep keeps track of new accounts.

    Lastly, goals should be very specific. Break your big goals down into the essentials. I like to think of breadcrumbs leading me along the way to success. There are systems, apps and programs to help you do that if you don’t know where to start. (Trello is a new-to-me program I’m trying out.)

     

     

     

    Commit to your success.

    If you’re going to take on something, it’s going to mean you’re 100% behind it. This is not the time to be wishy-washy. Save yourself the time and heartache. Write down what you want to accomplish. Plan it out. Make it as detailed as you possibly can to see the way clearly. BUT, don’t get stuck in “analysis paralysis”. Write it down and edit it later if things change.

     

    Establish your “why”.

    I’ve heard this so many times over the years and it’s such solid advice. There will be rough patches and pitfalls, bad days and setbacks, and when the going gets tough, recentering your focus is so helpful. Remembering your “why” will give you the strength and resolve to keep on.

     

    Do some solid networking.

    Whether you’re looking for success for personal or business reasons, a strong network will help set you up with anything from good advice to resources to mentoring. Surround yourself with people who have already had the success that you’re working towards. 

    Check out Facebook groups that have members that can help you and that you can help. For offline/local networking, check out Eventbrite for meetups, workshops and events.

     

    Two women dressed in business clothes, one standing, the other sitting, looking at a computer screen

     

    Get a support network established.

    Whether you need a walking buddy to make sure you show up everyday, or a partner to take on more of the chores to free up more time to work, having someone (or several people) to step in from time to time is going to helpful. It’s OK to ask for assistance, especially when other things are demanding your attention.

     

    Continue your education.

    Read blogs, books, articles or papers to keep up on the latest in your interest or field of work. Learn a new skill to give more value to what you’re going now. Forecast or even get ahead of new trends to position yourself as an expert.

     

    Maintain your health.

    There’s nothing more distracting than health issues. Don’t derail your progress by something you mostly have in your control. Make better choices in your exercise, eating and sleeping habits. 

     

    Keep a positive attitude.

    Visualizing your success is a powerful way to achieve it. What will your life look like when you have success? What will change? Fleshing out as many details as you can when you envision it will make it more real and attainable. (I’m a big believer in positive thinking and what it can do for you.)

     

    Quiet your fears.

    Of course, there will be days when things go wrong. There will be setbacks. Some things will be in your control and a few might not be. Letting your fears of failure sneak in won’t do you any favors. This is not the time for “hope for the best and expect the worst”. Keep in mind that mistakes or misfortunes are great ways of learning things and can make us stronger. Keep your focus on moving ahead and don’t get bogged down by “what-ifs”.

     

    Celebrate your success!

    As I said before, your success is going to get accomplished in stages. Each stage will probably be broken down into smaller ones. Take the time to recognize your little accomplishments. Get excited about your progress. You’re on your path to success!

     

    Hack your life today. Create more success quicker and easier. Smash those goals!

    A background image showing a path through pink roses with 
text overlay: 10 Things You Can Start Today to set up your Success

    Personal development kind of your thing? Check out the first one in the series – 10 Things You Can Start Today – Work & Life Balance.

    Want to see more from me like this? Save this article to share it with others. Follow me on your favorite social media (links at top & bottom of the page).  Leave a comment. Subscribe. Any or all!

    Until next time… Kelli

    background with pink rose and silver ladies watch with text overlay: 10 Things You Can Start Today Personal Development Series, and Life Hacks to Set Up Your Success
    background of closeup of desk with a plant in the upper right corner with text overlay: 10 Things You Can Start Today to Set Up Your Success

     

     

  • Motivational Monday – Move Forward

    Motivational Monday - Move Forward by Kelli Goldin | Have the courage to follow your own heart and intuition. They somehow know what you truly want to become. - Steve Jobs

    We all have times when we feel stuck, and in my experience, it’s because we lose sight of our goals. There’s a disconnect between what we do and what we really want out of all of it. We get wrapped up in the little things that demand most of our attention. They count, too, but they sap our energy and drive. We get bogged down.

    Motivational Monday - Move Forward by Kelli Goldin | You are never too young to start an empire & never too old to start a new dream. - Asa Hutchinson

    That’s a terrible way to achieve what we really want, so sometimes we need to rethink what we really want. And we need some motivation and reminders to find the path again. To get back on track. And to move forward.

    Motivational Monday - Move Forward by Kelli Goldin | You know all those things you've always wanted to do? You should go do them. EJ Lamprey

    My recommendation? We need to find our why. Find a core motivation, and (if you’re like me) a mantra or a word to focus on. It’ll be the thing to read or say when things get tough and the way gets lost.

    You’ll find your way back. You’ll start to move forward again.


    Do you have a favorite quote (you know I love them) that gives you motivation and keeps you moving forward? I’ve shared a few of mine. Share yours in the comments below. Then share this post or pins with some friends you think could use some Monday Motivation.

    dirt road curving into the distance, surrounded by trees with sunlight shining through. Text overlay: You know all those things you've always wanted to do? You should go do them.
    sandy path with tall grass on either side, leading to a beach in sunset light. text overlay: You are never too young to start an empire and you are never too old to start a new dream.
    wooden platform trail curving into the distance in the woods with sunlight peeking through. Text overlay: Have the courage to follow your own heart and intuition. They somehow know who you truly want to become. Steve Jobs
  • Introspective Sunday – Professional Drive

    White fluffy clouds and blue sky with text overlay Let Passion Drive Your Profession - Oprah Winfrey - kelligoldin.com

     

    I’ve always tried to make sure that I have a good start to my week by going over the appointments, deadlines, and events that I have planned. But I find that I really need to “get my head in the game,” as well. I need a theme. A mantra. An inspiration. Something that I can lean on when things get hectic, come up unexpectedly, or just get to be a little overwhelming. (You know just what I mean, don’t ya?)

    I know I’m not the only one to do this (I’ve probably had this recommended to me by up to 10 people over the years), but just in case you need reminded, or haven’t taken the time to get your mind straight before going headlong into another week, or just haven’t had the people around you give you this good advice, here’s what I’m focusing on this week:

     DRIVE & PASSION

    It’s a funny word, drive. Both a verb and a noun. It’s also a great visual, because inevitably you think of forward motion. Of course, that’s the way we want our professions to go – forward. Accomplishing things (like finally getting over myself and getting a second blog post done, with 3 more in the works – go me!), putting check marks on the to-do lists, and most importantly, feeling like you’ve had a good week’s work.

    Passion is one of my favorite words. I envision so much emotion welling up inside – much more than might be showing on the outside. The word drive is two things, and passion is, too. It’s emotional feelings paired with physical feelings. And the two together? Wow. Really WOW!

    So that’s what I’m taking into this week. I’m feeling really powerful. Words are powerful, and knowing what they mean to you just activates it and fuels you up. And I’ll have it if (when) I need it this week!

    If these quotes hit home with you, make sure to pin them to your Pinterest Inspiration or Quote Board (you’ve got one, right?). If you want to hear more from me, you can subscribe to my blog, and/or follow me on Pinterest.

    So, now I’d like to hear from you! What do you do to get ready for your week? What’s your favorite quote (and why)? What’s some good advice you can give us all to keep us moving forward without distraction from the crazy that finds us during the week? Leave a comment below!

     

    Dark grey background with text overlay Passion equals drive, drive equals determination, and enough determination equals success. Anette Sandberg kelligoldin.com

  • Pinterest Power

    Pinterest is a powerful visual search engine that engages users like no other social platform. With over 250 million users and half of them in the US, Pinterest is a valuable online tool to get your business found and featured. Even though online marketing has become an essential tool and Pinterest shows that it is a strong contender for connecting with consumers online, even when they’re shopping locally. source

    Local Business Marketing on Pinterest | Kelli Goldin Blog | #virtualassistant #va #pinterestmarketing


    • 30% of all social media users use Pinterest.
    • 40% of Pinterest users report discovering new brands and/or products there. source
    • 50% of Pinterest users have made a purchase after seeing a Promoted Pin. source
    • 1 out of 2 Millenials uses Pinterest every month and just as much as Instagram. source
    • 50% of Pinterest users earn over $50K, with 40% of those earning $100K, and 10% with a household income over $125K source
    • 72% of Pinterest users report looking at saved pins while shopping at brick & mortar stores. source
    • 81% of users are women, but 40% of new users are male. source
    • 87% of Pinterest users report making a purchase because of Pinterest. source
    • 93% report using Pinterest to plan purchases. source
    • 98% of Pinterest users report trying new things they find on Pinterest. source

     

    Bloggers, creatives and service providers should take notice, as well. Pinterest users aren’t just shopping, but looking to educate, improve, style, entertain and feed themselves and their families.

    With all this power to influence your business available, the question is, are you taking full advantage of it?

    This is where I come in. Whether you’re new to Pinterest or want help with your current Pinterest marketing, I have custom services to help your business get the most out of it – brand awareness, subscribers, opt-ins, and website traffic.

    Pinterest Services