While networking is a crucial aspect of business, itâ€™s really important we donâ€™t adopt fall into the trap of adopting what â€˜Life Beyond Codeâ€™ describes as a â€˜Use-and-Goâ€™ attitude.
â€˜Use-and-Goâ€™ basically refers to the act of being nice, or getting in touch with someone when you need something, and then vanishing from their lives once youâ€™ve gotten what you came for.
Do this and you risk the following:
- Any smart person will know the he or she has been “used” for your cause
- Very rarely will the other person be “as open as before” to fulfill your requests for help. He or she may not say “No” but can come up with a great excuse as to why that may not be the “right” time for them.
- Getting a “free ride” can become a habit for you and may hurt your other relationships
- Most important: Any sensible person would want to protect his or her network. If this person feels that someone in their network may be taken for a “free ride” it is in the person’s best interest that he or she not connect you to anyone in their network. You have not only lost an opportunity to make any other request to this person, you ALSO LOST an opportunity to make any request to any member of this person’s network through this person.
While most of us donâ€™t intentionally seek to be a â€œUse-And-Goâ€ person, we may inadvertently seem that way to others because of our busy lives. So here are a few tips to help in that area:
Stay in touch with your network: Give them a call, drop them a friendly email to touch base. Do this, not just when you need something, but just to let them know youâ€™re there.
Quantity before Quality: Donâ€™t just get to know someone because you know they can help you in the future, but get to know as many people as possible.
Always put others first: Try to ask what you can do for others when you get in touch with them. This creates an environment where people wonâ€™t have any doubts about underlying motives when you get in touch with them.