Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Highlights from my Williams Club Speech May 19th
NETWORKING is Your Little Black Dress

It’s simple and elegant. It’s timeless and fits in anywhere. It’s recognized worldwide as a standard, and should be in any savvy business woman’s arsenal. Dress it up or down and use wear it to death.

I’m not talking about a fashion mainstay. I’m talking about a communication necessity: the power to connect with people and form profitable relationships-- networking.

You may have the Coco Chanel styled classic hanging in your closet. Most women own a little black dress. But to make powerful business presence, wardrobe isn’t enough. Outfit yourself in a networking style that suits you just as personally.The“LBD” style of networking may be the answer to your business success.

“LBD”, the little black dress of networking, can’t be borrowed from anyone. It must genuinely fit you. It is your attention getter that attracts potential clients and referrals. It is the compelling power you deserve at any age or career level. Networking in classic little black dress style, you’ll move confidently, developing business and client. You are the CDO, “Chief Designer Officer”, marketing with style that is totally original. As Henry Higgins displayed by elevating Eliza, communication skill and connection is absolutely teachable. So let’s get dressed, ladies, and get to the party.

Women network differently than men. How many men would take on the little black dress challenge? Well, a few. I live in NYC and understand anything is possible! But the majority of men fall into traditional patterns of networking. Men begin their networking lives connecting to business through sports, school ties, and beer buzzed happy hours. Some men advance beyond this basic level. Male networkers do write books and articles on the subject. Yet most men don’t read these since they are stuck in the same old fashion plate for making contacts used in their father’s day. Somebody needs to tell them those days are gone.

Research reports women build relationships differently from men. Females tend to work more deliberately socially and often invest in one contact at a time that connects them to others. Women, as science suggests, also possess superior peripheral vision. This asset serves them on their feet as they meet people. It’s a social sixth sense most women have as they take on the landscape of networking opportunity. Women tend to work from trust while men are driven to take power. So trust yourself. Use a little black dress style of meeting and connecting to new people for business result. You have tools for success. Just use the right couture pattern of communication.

If you think you can’t learn to be a better networker, think of Audrey Hepburn as Ms. Doolittle diligently perfecting the “Rain in Spain” through repetitive patterning and simple practice. Think of timeless Audrey as Holly Golightly, breezing out the door to her NYC apartment in her little black dress, taking the world on with a wink and a smile. It’s elegant and simple. Practice and a positive attitude will ACE your networking in style. Make networking of daily importance in your business life and social world. As your communication standard, a little black dress attitude for networking goes a long way.

ACE your Little Black Dress Style

Networking doesn’t have to be complex, like the staple in your wardrobe, keep it simple.. ACE your networking in little black dress style!

ACE is manageable framework for meeting people through direct tools and strategies of “Associating, Creating and Engaging”. These are elegant simple designer communication tenets you don every day with confidence. Like a Chanel statement, this framework helps you make lasting impressions on people. Those impressions grow through authentic personable contact that blooms into a genuine business connection.

Mutual benefit underlies this business development design. Benefit isn’t always a bottom line credit for you. Be disciplined. Think. With whom will you associate? Let people see the simple benefit you offer them as a genuine person. Even if a deal is not on the horizon immediately as you build your contacts,keep associating. The benefit of adding a layer to your social network can be as valuable as getting one great business deal. It’s like hanging another perfect strand of pearls around your neck. Marvelous effect. The social network may carry you forward farther if you continue to invest strategic time and effort in it, and you can do it in little black dress style with strategic repeated practice and positive outlook.

People need to meet people as they do business, so think simply and elegantly, and with confidence. Someone out there wants you! Get out of your cubicle or office and find the people who are looking for you. See yourself on a continual networking campaign that is light touch. Be the Holly Golightly of networking as you ACE your own network in little black dress Style.

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