Last Sunday we went to work — we got ourselves out there and networked. Now it’s time to talk about the finer art of it. As just getting out there is not enough…
The most important action you can take to improve your professional relationships is to simply follow up. When you meet someone for the first time and she gives you her contact details you follow up. Send a short email, tell her how much you enjoyed the conversation and ask to stay in touch.
Sounds obvious? Not so much — the amount of people I meet who never follow up is staggering. And trust me: Chances are high that I will help you in the future if you left an impression on me; if you were one of the few people who actually took the three minutes to write a short follow-up email and built a relationship from there.
Make this your rule: Without any exception — always follow up.
If someone left a deep impression on you, say she spent the evening talking with you about the finer details of bridge financing, go the extra mile: Send her a handwritten note. I bet you money that she won’t forget you and your relationship is off to an amazing start.
And just to bust the number one argument I hear why people don’t follow up: You don’t need to have something meaningful to say, you don’t need to offer something special — just be the nice person you are, show that you care and send that email.
P.S. And when it comes to connecting on LinkedIn make sure you read my previous post on “Never ever do this”.