From the Founder

Don’t Stop Networking – Just Do it Differently

Because of the pandemic, the world’s a crazy place to live in right now. Most all of us are quarantined and confined to quarters. But that doesn’t mean you can’t get things done. The worst thing we can do right now, is stop connecting with people.  We need to continue it now, more than ever.  We just need to do it differently.     

People don’t make good decisions based on fear.  There’s plenty of that going on all around the world.  Don’t succumb to it.  I don’t know about you, but challenges like this give me an absolute singularity of focus.  In the middle of a serious challenge, it’s hard sometimes to see through the fog that surrounds our thoughts.

But there are opportunities. To see those opportunities, you need to have a singular focus on executing a plan and not get distracted by noise that doesn’t focus on the solutions to your challenge.

In difficult times, what I’ve seen is one of two things that generally happen to groups of people.  They either become frozen in fear or they become focused on solutions.

Fear vs focus. We cannot change what is going on around us, but we can change how we respond to it. Now is not the time to stop networking – it’s just the time to do it differently (at least for a while).

Keep doing what you need to do to stay healthy that’s important but, set aside your fear and focus on what you can do right now to work your way through this very difficult situation.

If you’re like many people, you probably have some free time on your hands.  Use it effectively.  Activate your network.  Reach out to your personal and professional connections to see how they are doing.  Schedule your time throughout the next week or more to do virtual 1-2-1’s.  Meet people via Skype, Zoom, or GoToMeeting.  Don’t reach out to them to just try to sell something to them.  Instead, find out if there is anything you can do for them?  Recently, I heard John Maxwell say, “you can’t help everybody, but you can help somebody.”  Use this time to help somebody.

And don’t forget, it’s ok for you to ask for help also.  The people in your personal network are your colleagues. They should mostly be people that you are at credibility with. It’s ok to share your needs with them.

Also, this is also a great time to pour into yourself.  Work on the business plan you intend to execute when this is over.  Read books that will stimulate and motivate you to do the things you need to do when this is done.  Spend time learning from the amazing experts here on Entrepreneur.com. 

Now’s not the time to ignore your network.  No, now’s the time to expand and deepen your network.  Connect with your contacts in a different way.  Deepen the relationship and be there to help them where you can.

You’re going to have a business tomorrow because of the actions you take today. You’ll get through this.  It may not be easy – but you can come out of this, light years ahead of your competition if, you use this time to invest in yourself and invest in your network.  That investment, plus the creation of a plan that you will execute when you are all out of this lockdown will position you to weather this viral storm.

Today, you need you network more than ever. 

Stay healthy and activating your network will help you stay successful.

Called the “father of modern networking” by CNN, Dr. Ivan Misner is a New York Times bestselling author.  He is also the Founder & Chief Visionary Officer of BNI (www.bni.com), the world’s largest business networking organization.  His latest book, Who’s in Your Room, The Secret to Creating Your Best Life,  is available at bookstores and at Amazon.com. 

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