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Build Your Social Networks

Build Your Social Networks
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I spent a little time on my blog the other day griping about LinkedIN. I wanted them to add photos (still do), so it’d be even easier to connect with other people. So many times, we go to a conference or professional event, come home with a stack of business cards, and realize that we don’t really remember which face went with which name, and sometimes worse, which conversation to which name.

But while I wait for Reid Hoffman and team to implement my every wish (I want a pony!), here’s what I recommend might be a good hack for building your own networking toolbag to cement your relationships with interesting and engaging people. Please note: I don’t care if this is your corporate website or your personal website. If there are policies or red tape about getting a new page added, or doing things outside the box, circumvent this. Do things yourself and don’t wait for your company to support your professional networking needs.

Make an About Me / Contact Me Page

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If you want an example, here’s mine. Note a few things about it: I have a picture of me (in fact, I have several pictures of me, because I never want someone to be at an event, see me, and not link the name to the face). Note also that I talk about things I’ve done of significance that might also remind you why you were reaching out to speak with me in the first place.


And then, the good stuff: look at the bottom where I list out a bunch of social networking and communications sites and what username I employ for all of them. This gives you easy-cheesy ways to reach out to me. I include my cell phone, my email address, and about a dozen places like Twitter, where you can connect.

Connect Beyond The Business Card

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When you get home and enter in a bunch of business cards to your contact system, go further and seek out some of these people via the social networks. Check LinkedIN. Check Twitter. Check Flickr. See where you can find the people you found most interesting and engaging.

Linking and tying all these social systems together is still a fairly manual work. There are some neat companies out there taking a stab at it, like Wink, but I find that I’m still doing it the one-at-a-time manually.

Why Bother?

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Over the last year, I have helped two dozen people find jobs simply by strolling through my various social networks and remembering someone who had the same line of business as the person seeking the work. I’ve built a knack for knowing someone who knows someone who can answer the call. I find that by being more accessible, and by linking together all these online networks such that you find people in all their digital forms, you build a relationship tool suitable for helping people in the future.

Finding jobs is no longer about sending out resumes and reading big job search boards. Building prospect and customer lists isn’t just about buying names from large telemarketing vendors. Discovering people who do what you do and who are as passionate as you is an ACTIVE game, not a passive one. And it’s up to you to engage the right tools to get it done.

Have you done any of this on your own? Do you have a social networking success story? And if you HAVEN’T joined these kinds of networks yet, why not? We’d love to hear more.

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Chris Brogan blogs at [chrisbrogan.com]. He is an active Twitter user, and is heading to PodCamp Europe in Stockholm in a few days. Stop in. It’s a free event.

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Last Updated on January 18, 2019

7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

Some people will have a rain cloud hanging over them, no matter what the weather is outside. Their negative attitude is toxic to your own moods, and you probably feel like there is little you can do about it.

But that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

If you want to effectively deal with negative people and be a champion of positivity, then your best route is to take definite action through some of the steps below.

1. Limit the time you spend with them.

First, let’s get this out of the way. You can be more positive than a cartoon sponge, but even your enthusiasm has a chance of being afflicted by the constant negativity of a friend.

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In fact, negativity has been proven to damage your health physically, making you vulnerable to high levels of stress and even cardiac disease. There’s no reason to get hurt because of someone else’s bad mood.

Though this may be a little tricky depending on your situation, working to spend slightly less time around negative people will keep your own spirits from slipping as well.

2. Speak up for yourself.

Don’t just absorb the comments that you are being bombarded with, especially if they are about you. It’s wise to be quick to listen and slow to speak, but being too quiet can give the person the impression that you are accepting what’s being said.

3. Don’t pretend that their behavior is “OK.”

This is an easy trap to fall into. Point out to the person that their constant negativity isn’t a good thing. We don’t want to do this because it’s far easier to let someone sit in their woes, and we’d rather just stay out of it.

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But if you want the best for this person, avoid giving the false impression that their negativity is normal.

4. Don’t make their problems your problems.

Though I consider empathy a gift, it can be a dangerous thing. When we hear the complaints of a friend or family member, we typically start to take on their burdens with them.

This is a bad habit to get into, especially if this is a person who is almost exclusively negative. These types of people are prone to embellishing and altering a story in order to gain sympathy.

Why else would they be sharing this with you?

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5. Change the subject.

When you suspect that a conversation is starting to take a turn for the negative, be a champion of positivity by changing the subject. Of course, you have to do this without ignoring what the other person said.

Acknowledge their comment, but move the conversation forward before the euphoric pleasure gained from complaining takes hold of either of you.

6. Talk about solutions, not problems.

Sometimes, changing the subject isn’t an option if you want to deal with negative people, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still be positive.

I know that when someone begins dumping complaints on me, I have a hard time knowing exactly what to say. The key is to measure your responses as solution-based.

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You can do this by asking questions like, “Well, how could this be resolved?” or, “How do you think they feel about it?”

Use discernment to find an appropriate response that will help your friend manage their perspectives.

7. Leave them behind.

Sadly, there are times when we have to move on without these friends, especially if you have exhausted your best efforts toward building a positive relationship.

If this person is a family member, you can still have a functioning relationship with them, of course, but you may still have to limit the influence they have over your wellbeing.

That being said, what are some steps you’ve taken to deal with negative people? Let us know in the comments.

You may also want to read: How to Stop the Negative Spin of Thoughts, Emotions and Actions.

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