Fact; networking is the lifeblood of your career and business.
The reason behind its importance — well, networking can better your reputation, boost visibility, access fresh information, improve overall growth and support you for more impactful connections.
Of course, that’s just the tip of the iceberg; the magic of networking can go above and beyond what we just mentioned.
In Asia, where every market has its own attractions, the success of your venture relies heavily on not just the number of people you know, but the robustness of each relationship you foster.
The point of networking is pretty straightforward and simple; the confusing part is knowing which networking connections are right and advantageous for your career and business.
But, even if you managed to find the right partnerships, you’re still confronted with what you can offer to the other person.
Asian leaders are known to be upfront with benefits; if you can’t muster right away, you’re going to lose that connection.
In this article, we’re going to give you some tips on building a strong network for your Asian business connections and how to diversify networking.
Did you know that Australian exports to Asia have more than doubled the value of exports to the rest of the globe?
Yes, there’s a massive potential to grow further. But where should you kickstart this venture?
We say, networking.
From organizations to people, networking fosters reciprocal arrangements for mutual benefits.
For instance, when expanding productivity, networking can play a pivotal part in outsourcing virtual assistants who are more cost-effective. It can elevate a business or a career, in ways beyond what you can do alone.
So, how do you build a strong network?
As we said, it won’t matter how many people you’ve met at social events, if they don’t bring a meaningful network to your business or career, it’s all for nothing.
Knowing the right people lets you work smarter, not harder. You can transform your networking opportunities if you can track down the most valuable networking prospects. So, if you ever managed to spot them, create a contact list.
But always remember, this isn’t about reaching big-name insiders, this is about narrowing down the right people that’ll be of value to you.
Learn to leverage the connection that you already have. And from there, forge deeper connections and capitalize on the connections of your existing network.
In most Asian territories, there’s already a wealth of support to tap into. Organizations/groups that can help you get an introduction to certain people or give you some worthy professional advice.
Building a strong network in Asia already sounds challenging as it is, without highlights on client experience or tax policies added into the mix.
With these toppling challenges, you’re required to be adaptable.
Slow-burn only sounds immaculate in romance books, in business, that’ll take a barrel of patience to get through.
Building a strong network in Asia is as slow-burn as you can get.
Knowing this, it’ll be helpful to know and connect with people with strong native experience and language skills, with a line of contacts of their own.
Cultural unawareness leads to serious problems.
As you may know, communication is the key to building strong relationships. But communication isn’t enough, you have to be culturally aware so that you can forge relationships/connections based on mutual trust.
For example, most countries in Asia recommend that you look formal, respectful and dignified. Other countries like Thailand, don’t do handshakes. Instead, they’ll put their hands together, palm to palm, right in front of their face and bow, and you’re expected to do the same.
If you know how to leverage your knowledge, understanding culture and trends will help you in building a strong network.
How do you build a strong network with people? By forming partnerships based on trust.
In the West, executives can already forge business relationships through several phone calls or a one-time meeting, this is far from the case in Asian countries.
The people from the East want you to make an effort in building that connection, so it can develop further.
Asian people put trust in their relationships which is why they’re very careful who they let in.
It’s settled; networking is an important aspect of any business or profession.
It creates opportunities and provides ideas that you need to grow and succeed.
However, networking can also get you stuck in a silo—a repetitive motion of attending the same events and meeting the same circle of people, prohibiting you from expanding your reach and taking advantage of newer opportunities.
And you won’t even notice that you’re trapped in it, because you’re still constantly moving; back and forth.
You see, human beings are naturally drawn to people or the environment they’re most comfortable with. But the problem with comfortability is already knowing what to expect, and that’s not good for expanding your network. This will stifle your development and ceases innovation.
You need your network to be more diverse, and here’s how you’re going to accomplish that.
At times, you have to embrace discomfort, so you can grow.
While it’s easy to be around people who appear familiar to you, it also results in networking restrictions.
Make time to join events and meet people outside your circle. Attend conferences from different industries or places; go and seek out groups across ages, cultures, races and sectors.
If you can challenge yourself and expand your horizon, you’ll get more chances to meet people, learn and expand your network.
It doesn’t always have to be a formal event in sleek clothes — explore the broad spectrum of opportunities and connect with people from other fields.
This could simply mean joining different communities, board discussions or virtual conferences. Mingle in new spaces, and you’d be surprised just how expansive the networking opportunities are, outside your usual environment.
The greatest thing about welcoming diversity is the inventiveness that thrives along with it.
Since you’re all out embracing this philosophy, you need to go out there, experience different backgrounds and connect with various people.
If you can widen your views and perspectives, you can amplify the knowledge bases of the sectors you’re tapping into.
The most obvious way to get your network to be more diverse is to collaborate with people outside your usual circle of influence.
But know that this is more than just meeting a new crowd, this is about finding the right people to collaborate and share your ideas with to achieve the same goal.
With collaborative networking, you’ll gain access to affluent support and resources that you need to reach your business goals.
Networking strategies have long been the most effective tool to grow your career and business venture.
Below are some of the best networking strategies to help you get started on your networking agenda.
Make a list of everyone you know — family, friends, teachers, coaches, neighbors, classmates, coworkers and everybody you could think of. Don’t hesitate to reach out to them; ask for advice, information, resources and whatever it is you think they have that you can use.
Ask for referrals from your existing network. These people in your contacts have connections too, that might be helpful for you.
Customized your business card whenever you’re out at networking events—add your name, degree, contact information, career objective and other relevant information.
In addition, when networking, you should hand out more than one business card and pass it along to people who will be of value to you.
Join and become a member of pertinent professional organizations. Best believe they can help you get connected with thought leaders or professionals, opening more opportunities.
Ask for the help of a mentor. Mentors can give you solid advice and information. On top of that, they’re also great avenues for resources and important contacts.
Hone your elevator speech. Craft a 30-second pitch that focuses on your distinctive selling points.
Building a strong network is no easy task, especially if you’re trying to do it in foreign territories.
Nevertheless, networking is essential — for entrepreneurs, business owners, professionals, and even job seekers.
Promise you, by networking, you can thrive professionally and accelerate towards success.