Hey Starbucks has been playing Christmas music since Halloween so I guess it’s time for a Holiday Time is a Great Time for Networking Blog.
I’ve always felt that the holidays are a great time for networking, meeting new people, taking new steps to find your next opportunity, and being out there. I have also found it an easier time to contact prospects and that people can actually be more accessible and answer emails and calls. They probably want to make sure that they won’t find a lump of coal under their tree.
I have always felt that the key to a successful 1st Quarter is an aggressive 4th Quarter. When other people go into Holiday mode I try to stay in work mode.
The holiday period offers a full networking dance card. There are lots of events out there. You will find that your calendar can be quickly filled. Recently I have found holiday may involve numerous organizations collectively sponsoring one event so the turnout is larger and people from various disciplines attend.
Different people come out at Holiday events. The Holiday season seems to attract people you don’t often see during the year. Often Senior Level people come out during the Holidays to show the flag.
Holiday events are also social events so they are more informal and allow for one on one dialogue versus sitting down at a table and listening to a speaker. You can cover more ground, meet more people and make more contacts. Don’t leave your business cards at home or keep them in your purse.
Let’s face it. Many people aren’t comfortable with networking and one on one dialogue with strangers is not their strong suite. As Holiday events are social events, significant others often attend. Spouses can often provide relationship building touch points and follow up opportunities that you might not be skilled at. These are the times to be working all the advantages that you can.
Holiday time offers opportunities for special follow up that you might not regularly implement as part of your networking strategy and I’m not talking about send a follow up resume to the CEO that you met. Maybe it is a Holiday card or a personal note requesting a courtesy interview or taking your call. Maybe you will find that the Holiday spirit of graciousness may generate different results this time of year. There is has been an uptake in hiring across the country recently that may increase hiring in the spring. This is a great time of year to make sure that you are top of mind.
The Holiday Season is also a great time to recognize some of the key contacts in your networking world that have aligned your direction or improved your wiring in the past year. If you got a new position this is a great time to thank the person that helped you get there. Send them a Starbucks card, burn them a CD or sign them up for a Magazine Subscription or just send them a personal note. Everybody likes to be recognized and appreciated.
So get out there this Holiday Season and let’s see what the New Year will bring. I want to enter the New Year being aggressive in closing out the year and optimistic on the results that will bring.
In the spirit of Christmas download my free audio CD called Hank Blank’s Guide to Holiday Networking. Adjust the volume up a bit. Hope you enjoy.
You can connect with Hank on Linkedin
Follow his updates on twitter @hankblank
Be stupid with him on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/hankblank
Watch some videos on http://www.youtube.com/user/MrHankblank
Or you can just send him a large gift. They are always welcome.