I have been networking for many years. I also speak on networking to companies and organizations across the country.
This week somebody told me that things will be shutting during the Holidays and nothing will get done. Maybe in their world but not in mine. I don’t think that most people are looking for things to shut down.
I think that the holidays are a great time for networking, taking steps to find your next opportunity, meet new people and be out there.
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 go into work mode. Thinking that the Holiday mode is time for the passive mode is a passé mode especially if you are in transition or own your own business.
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.
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 so to speak.
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.
Let’s face it. Many people aren’t social butterflies 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 times offer 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 follow up Starbucks meeting. Maybe you will find that the Holiday spirit of graciousness may generate different results this time of year. All tactics are worth a try in these times.
The Holiday Season is also a great time to be grateful and focus on the people and customs that really make life important. That can be tough in tough times. If you have good vision you will see the people who need more help. It’s not only the people holding up the Looking for Work and Need Food signs outside the exits to my Vons and Home Depot stores, it’s deeper than that.
So get out there this Holiday Season and let’s see what the New Year will bring.
To contact Hank to speak to your company or organization send him an e mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or Tweet @hankblank You can download Hank’s Guide to Holiday Networking CD’s by visiting his site at www.hankblank.com