Sunday, January 15, 2012

This past week I met with a new networking friend. She happens to represent a direct sales company and I'm always a little hesitant when meeting with folks who are independent representatives of such businesses. I don't know whether they are badly trained by the companies or just don't know better in the way they act sometimes.

I can say with great approval, that the coffee meeting went very well. We were both relaxed and just took the time to get to know each other. We found out that neither of us are the sorority type and that we just like the easy ordinary way of life. I want to get together with this person in the future and am already thinking about how I might help her.

Conversely, recently I met someone who represents the very same company and the meeting was entirely different. This person had dollar signs in her eyes and commission breath. I mean, she just couldn't stop talking about (or actually selling) her product. You can guess that I really don't want to meet this person again any time soon.

What can we learn from this? Relationship-building, which is the hallmark of great networkers, takes time. It typically takes a few meetings before each participant feels comfortable with the other. Those who try to "rush" the relationship, never get to the second or third meeting that will help to develop helpful friends, because they have scared those very people away with their overbearing sales job.

What is your experience with this?

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