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70 20 10: A Formula for Successful Networking

70 20 10: A Formula for Successful Networking

Shortly after starting my business in 2008, a friend of mine introduced me to Mike Sansone, who’s business, ConverStations, helped consultants and other small businesses develop and execute their social media strategy. I learned a lot from working with Mike, but the biggest take away was a very simple rule for networking: 70 20 10.

When Mike taught me this formula, we were specifically talking about how to best utilize social media to develop and create awareness around my brand, but this formula is a great guide for face-to-face networking and nurturing productive relationships in general.

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70

When building relationships face to face or via social media you want people to see you a trusted resource. So, make sure 70% of your interactions or their exposure to you is you being just that – a resource. You know that guy at the chamber event or that gal on your Facebook page that only talks about themselves and what they do for a living? Don’t be like them. I have a Facebook contact who I know is trying to make the world a better place, but the only thing I see him post about is the BMW he drives and telling everyone how great his business is. Be a resource.

The only way you can truly be a resource to the people around you is to understand what they are about. What do they like? What don’t they like? What are they interested in? What are they passionate about? What motivates them? When you begin to understand these things, make an effort to give them what they value. The more you do this, the more they will see you as a resource. The more they see you as a resource, the more they will trust you. I don’t care if it’s a business or personal relationship: if there is no trust, there is no relationship.

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20

When people see you as a resource and trustworthy, their walls come down and they are more interested in you. 20% of the time, allow people to get to know you better. While making an effort to relate to them, talk about the things in the world you find value in, engage people in conversation about things you’re passionate about, talk about your kids, or the football game, or the movie you saw. Forget about business and have fun getting to know each other. People work with others whom they trust and like. Let them get to know the real you.

10

When people trust and like you, they are more willing to take time to learn about and support your purpose, mission, and/or business. If you have shown you care about them and have invested time and energy in them, they will be more willing share their resources with you, be it their energy, time, or money. Talk about you and whatever it is you are trying to accomplish only 10% of the time.

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No doubt about it: the only way you are going to be successful is if people know what you do. So, tell them. Just don’t make your sales pitch your identity. If you only talk about yourself and what you do, you are going to be known as the guy or gal who only talks about themselves and what they do. If you only talk to people when you need something from them, they will start to avoid you. If you only call them to talk about your business, they will screen your calls. You smell what I’m cooking?

70 20 10

I try to utilize this formula in all my relationships and it has yet to lead me down the wrong path.

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Be a resource and build trust. Get to know each other and create connection. Do both effectively and your business efforts will be more efficient and your conversations will be more meaningful.

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Last Updated on March 23, 2021

Manage Your Energy so You Can Manage Your Time

Manage Your Energy so You Can Manage Your Time

One of the greatest ironies of this age is that while various gadgets like smartphones and netbooks allow you to multitask, it seems that you never manage to get things done. You are caught in the busyness trap. There’s just too much work to do in one day that sometimes you end up exhausted with half-finished tasks.

The problem lies in how to keep our energy level high to ensure that you finish at least one of your most important tasks for the day. There’s just not enough hours in a day and it’s not possible to be productive the whole time.

You need more than time management. You need energy management

1. Dispel the idea that you need to be a “morning person” to be productive

How many times have you heard (or read) this advice – wake up early so that you can do all the tasks at hand. There’s nothing wrong with that advice. It’s actually reeks of good common sense – start early, finish early. The thing is that technique alone won’t work with everyone. Especially not with people who are not morning larks.

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I should know because I was once deluded with the idea that I will be more productive if I get out of bed by 6 a.m. Like most of you Lifehackers, I’m always on the lookout for productivity hacks because I have a lot of things in my plate. I’m working full time as an editor for a news agency, while at the same time tending to my side business as a content marketing strategist. I’m also a travel blogger and oh yeah, I forgot, I also have a life.

I read a lot of productivity books and blogs looking for ways to make the most of my 24 hours. Most stories on productivity stress waking up early. So I did – and I was a major failure in that department – both in waking up early and finishing early.

2. Determine your “peak hours”

Energy management begins with looking for your most productive hours in a day. Getting attuned to your body clock won’t happen instantly but there’s a way around it.

Monitor your working habits for one week and list down the time when you managed to do the most work. Take note also of what you feel during those hours – do you feel energized or lethargic? Monitor this and you will find a pattern later on.

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My experiment with being a morning lark proved that ignoring my body clock and just doing it by disciplining myself to wake up before 8 a.m. will push me to be more productive. I thought that by writing blog posts and other reports in the morning that I would be finished by noon and use my lunch break for a quick gym session. That never happened. I was sleepy, distracted and couldn’t write jack before 10 a.m.

In fact that was one experiment that I shouldn’t have tried because I should know better. After all, I’ve been writing for a living for the last 15 years, and I have observed time and again that I write more –and better – in the afternoon and in evenings after supper. I’m a night owl. I might as well, accept it and work around it.

Just recently, I was so fired up by a certain idea that – even if I’m back home tired from work – I took out my netbook, wrote and published a 600-word blog post by 11 p.m. This is a bit extreme and one of my rare outbursts of energy, but it works for me.

3. Block those high-energy hours

Once you have a sense of that high-energy time, you can then mold your schedule so that your other less important tasks will be scheduled either before or after this designated productive time.

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Block them out in your calendar and use the high-energy hours for your high priority tasks – especially those that require more of your mental energy and focus. You also need to use these hours to any task that will bring you closer to you life’s goal.

If you are a morning person, you might want to schedule most business meetings before lunch time as it’s important to keep your mind sharp and focused. But nothing is set in stone. Sometimes you have to sacrifice those productive hours to attend to other personal stuff – like if you or your family members are sick or if you have to attend your son’s graduation.

That said, just remember to keep those productive times on your calendar. You may allow for some exemptions but stick to that schedule as much as possible.

There’s no right or wrong way of using this energy management technique because everything depends on your own personal circumstances. What you need to remember is that you have to accept what works for you – and not what other productivity gurus say you should do.

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Understanding your own body clock is the key to time management. Without it, you end up exhausted chasing a never-ending cycle of tasks and frustrations.

Featured photo credit: Collin Hardy via unsplash.com

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