The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy



How many of you think networking is overrated? 

I used to think so.  Not until recently I started realizing that everything I have (my apartment, my car and my real estate) and everyone I know (my boyfriend, my friends, my colleagues) are all results of my past networking.    Networking is a fancy word for building relationship.  Most people think networking is planned activities that only happen in a defined space for a short period of time (i.e. drinking champagne in your best outfit at cocktail party for 3 hours talking about nothing).  My suspicion is that probably someone in the professional world invented this term just to make it sounds more technical so the introverts would just shy away.   My fellow readers don’t let this little trick fool you.  The true definition of networking is building relationship & rapport with new friends while being yourself anywhere anytime. 

Doesn’t this sound easy enough? 

I know what you are thinking about right now: ‘It is easy for you to say.  You are an extrovert! How about the shy bunch like me?  It doesn’t matter where and when, I am just not comfortable talking to strangers!’  Trust me I know how you feel.    I am an only child and I was very shy as a kid.  If you grew up in a city like Hong Kong with 2 working parents, the chances were you would spend a lot of time alone in your tiny apartment.  I had a few friends in school yes, but it’s not that we could go out and play on the street after school.  Hong Kong is a big city with almost 7 millions people.  Even though the crime rate was (still is) relatively low compared to the US, kids were usually not allowed to leave the house until at least we were 13 or 14.  So what did I do home alone before I was 13?   Not much!   Not until I came to the U.S when I was 16, my situation changed from ‘no one to talk to but I still have my parents’ to ‘no one to talk to but I really have no one!’  In extreme situation as such, I was forced to break out of my cocoon.  I trained myself to talk, build relationship and make friends.  

Here is my 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy: 

1)      Ask questions.  The truth is everyone loves to talk about themselves.  When I say ask questions, I don’t mean what is your name or what do you do for living types of questions.  I meant real questions that bring up the past, the feeling, the experience and passion out of your new friends.  Vice versa, when someone ask you:  ‘How are you?’ Don’t just say I am fine then stop there.  Speak with sincerity and put some context to your fineness. For Example:  I am doing great because I just closed a BIG deal in San Francisco. 

2)      Offer help – You can always add values to someone’s life anytime anywhere.  Offering help doesn’t mean you have to spend hours of research and work overnight to make things happen.  Send your new friends a thank you note with information you think they might be interested such as an intriguing article, shocking news or fun facts that could benefit them.   

3)      Business Cards.  Always bring and offer your business cards.  This does show your professionalism and you always seem prepared.  If those who work for yourself; design a unique business card that make you stand out. (Check out Scott Ginsberg’s How to Make Your Business Cards UNFORGETTABLE)  

4)      Write things down.  After a good conversation, ask for their business card immediately and jot down how you can help.  If the person didn’t bring their business card, ask for their contact anyway and write things down on your notebook.

5)      Set goal and practice.  Set goal to meet someone new person every week. Networking does take work.  The more you practice the more you will get better. 

6)      Follow Up – If you promise someone that you will send them info.  Do it within the next 24 hours.

7)      Be yourself at all time.  You cannot pretend to be an angel at a cocktail party and become a bitch at Starbucks yelling at the barista.  You never know who is behind you waiting in line.   To recap, the 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy

  • Ask Questions

  • Offer Help

  • Bring Business Cards

  • Write Things Down

  • Set Goal and Practice

  • Follow Up

  • Be Yourself at All Time

Put your person before your profession; your personality before your position; your individuality before your industry. (Thanks Scott Ginsberg for the quote).  All of us are unique.   We are all worthwhile individuals that everyone should meet and learn from.  There are also great people on the street waiting for you to meet them.   Have fun networking and turn the next stranger to your new best friend!

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28 Responses to “The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy”


  1. [...] Yeung presents The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy. Few of us are great at networking, so it’s always worth revisiting how to do it effectively [...]

  2. on 14 Apr 2007 at 8:11 am

    Dear Edith,

    I found your blog via StartupSpark.com and and delighted to learn about you. In fact, I would love to interview you for one of our webinars we host every week. If this is something you are interested you can contact me at heidi (at) wecai.org.

    Looking forward to hearing from you!

    Warmest regards,

    Heidi Richards, Founder & CEO
    The WECAI Network™

  3. on 22 Apr 2007 at 8:42 pm

    Seven More Networking Tips…

    Edith Yeung, who has a very inspirational blog, has posted her 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy: Ask Questions Offer Help Bring Business Cards Write Things Down Set Goal and Practice Follow Up Be Yourself at All Time Edith’s list……

  4. gpaskill on 26 Apr 2007 at 4:07 pm

    What I’ve seen makes Networking difficult is the way it gets advertised as this process where 2 people meet at an association meeting, click their heels, and become lifelong buddies all in 30 nanoseconds or less. And, of course, they’re bidirectional sources for job leads.

    Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. Most of all, it’s especially upsetting in this day and age of instant messaging, instant access, instant everything.

    Worse than that is how you hear some people get jobs and the way they’re portrayed in the press. You read of someone who got a job because they knew somebody else. They make that seem instantaneous too. They don’t say anything in the article about all the delays between interviews, the way some companies stall their hiring practices, and how maybe a brief encounter led to a job opening 8 months later because somebody else left the company. When you’re then looking to assemble a network, employed or unemployed, and it doesn’t bear that fruit so immediately, you’re led to believe it doesn’t work.

    I hate to say that as a resident of the SF Bay Area, I’m even less convinced that networking works as advertised. Around here, many in the corporate world pride themselves on having no time for anybody. That’s especially true of those making the 6-figure incomes, the ones who we hear get their jobs through networking. Reality is many of those people get hired because of the companies they’ve worked at, have a known product to their name, etc. It has become a status symbol to say that one works at least 60-70 hours per week, and boast that one doesn’t have time for one’s spouse nor kids. Therefore, to state that one has time to network to amidst all the work is a no-no.

    The way you can do networking around here is to deliberately get a job that requires you to constantly contact other companies, including vendors and suppliers so that you get known by others while you’re doing your job for your employer.


  5. [...] Yeung presents The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy posted at Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. Act., saying, “Networking is a fancy word for building [...]

  6. marcia siegel on 15 May 2007 at 4:36 am

    hello,
    i have tagged your blog. happy tagging.


  7. [...] to network? Read Edith’s 7 tips for making it [...]

  8. Jermayn Parker on 17 May 2007 at 5:20 pm

    Great article and am learning your steps at the moment with my new business venture and it is true, very true..


  9. [...] presents The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy posted at Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. Act., saying, “To my fellow toastmaster! [...]

  10. Edith on 04 Jun 2007 at 7:24 am

    This post is also featured in Carnival of Careers in Middle Age #4


  11. [...] on her book “30 Days to Power” and will be out in October this year. She presents 7 rules of networking made easy. “… the true definition of networking is building relationships and rapport with new [...]

  12. on 26 Jun 2007 at 3:55 pm

    [...] presents The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy posted at Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. [...]

  13. on 16 Jul 2007 at 1:28 am

    [...] presents The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy posted at Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. [...]

  14. on 18 Jul 2007 at 7:59 am

    [...] presents The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy posted at Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. [...]


  15. [...] presents The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy posted at Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. [...]

  16. Edith on 18 Jul 2007 at 1:59 pm

    This article is also featured at

    Carnival of Image & Influence | Vol. 2


  17. [...] presents The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy posted at Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. [...]

  18. on 22 Jul 2007 at 6:41 am

    you tips are so simple and easy to remember and practise.. will definitely use it in my next networking session, thanks

  19. on 23 Jul 2007 at 6:16 pm

    11th Edition of the Carnival of Leadership Growth…

    Welcome to the July 15, 2007 edition of carnival of leadership growth.

    SpiKe presents Self-Help Myths: Procrastination posted at Organize IT.

    Mike Harmon presents Bookkeeping Basics For Your Business posted at Basic Accounting, saying, &#822…


  20. [...] also working on her book “30 Days to Power” and will be out in October this year. She presents 7 rules of networking made easy. “… the true definition of networking is building relationships and rapport with new friends [...]

  21. Tim on 13 Aug 2007 at 9:02 pm

    I find the term ‘networking’ somewhat dehumanising. I had an email the other day from someone I’d met saying “It was nice to network with you”. What’s wrong with ‘meet’ or ’socialise’? I don’t want to think that someone’s only talking to me because they think it might help them make a sale or advance their career.

    I’ve never ‘networked’ in my life. I go out & socialise & chat to people & if I subsequently make business contacts that way, fair enough. But ‘networkers’ are very obvious at social functions, and very, very annoying. If I want your business card, I’ll ask for it!

    Think of yourself as a ’socialiser’ and you’ll be a lot more successful!


  22. [...] Edith Yeung presents The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy [...]

  23. on 12 Sep 2007 at 6:10 pm

    Great ideas. I will try them at my next function. A tech-savy way to target your networking is with a service called . I use it all the time and generate real leads and referrals.


  24. [...] your worth 29. Learn to respectfully say “no” 30. Take breaks 31. Take vacations 32. Network 33. Arrive Early  34. Dress to impress 35. Prepare for meetings 36. Be flexible - you can’t [...]

  25. on 10 Dec 2007 at 10:23 am

    [...] presents The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy posted at Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. [...]

  26. on 17 Dec 2007 at 6:23 am

    More excellent suggestions, Edith.
    Networking is building relationships…so true.
    A dear friend, Jon Pertee, once told me that “anyone who thinks that their good fortune is strictly the result of their own making, alone, is fooling themselves.”
    Peace and wonder,
    CG


  27. [...] The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy [...]

  28. on 12 Feb 2008 at 12:14 pm

    [...] presents The 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy posted at Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. [...]

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