These 5 easy tips will help you to make a genuine connection with anyone.
A wonderful quote from the book How to Win Friends and Influence People by the author Dale Carnegie made me really think about networking, connecting and forming relationships with others – “You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you."
With the click of a button, we can add a friend or make a new connection with anyone in the world. In this age of digital communication, and at a time when businesses thrive on always being connected by emails, video conferencing, mobile conversations and social media, this quote brings to the surface the true value of actual human connections and just how important this is in modern day business. I want my network to be brought together as people who know me, like me and of course trust me - because that’s my only usable network - but the ‘real’ connections you make in life, will last a lot longer than many professional promises, so remember:
"I truly believe that everything that we do and everyone that we meet is put in our path for a purpose. There are no accidents; we're all teachers - if we're willing to pay attention to the lessons we learn, trust our positive instincts and not be afraid to take risks or wait for some miracle to come knocking at our door." Marla Gibbs
Paying attention is essential in any business; whether it’s building professional relationships, pitching a new idea, or truly listening to the other person. Listening is a crucial skill in boosting another person’s self-esteem. Do your research, avoid distractions and take time to learn as much as you can about those you’re connecting with, what really matters to them, their passions and interests – not just the basic details. These relationships can be fulfilling in their own right if you invest in them properly.
Stay in touch with the real world:
"The people you surround yourself with influence your behaviors, so surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher." Oprah Winfrey
Our most important and powerful connections happen when we’re face-to-face, not online. Make new friends and reconnect with old ones. Make it a priority to spend time with happy and positive friends and colleagues who simply make you feel good on the inside, improve your mood and sense of wellbeing, and boost your outlook of life. Managers should encourage teams to interact in person, and not just on the phone, and this will help employees feel more satisfied, not only in the workplace, but in all areas of their lives.
Their positive impact:
There are so many benefits from expanding your relationships, either at work or within your social life. Positive and supportive connections help us to feel healthier, happier, and more satisfied with our lives. It leads us to feel more supported, supportive and develops mutual trust. Ultimately the people with the most positive impact will make the biggest difference in your business success. I heard a great expression some time ago, “people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
For better friendships, be a better friend yourself:
"Treat others as you wish to be treated. Don't just be nice, but be kind to other people. That can be so rewarding." Mary Lambert
Be reliable, trustworthy, dependable and allow the relationship to nurture over time. Technology has got in the way with how we build and maintain real rapport, texting as we talk, emailing instead of speaking. We need to devote time, energy, and effort to developing and building better friendships and this is widely recognised at being one of the most valuable life skills. But above all else be genuine – if you don’t have a genuine interest in those with whom you’re trying to connect with, don’t waste each other’s time in trying.
Being helpful can make you happier:
and more productive too! If there’s an opportunity to help someone, do it, regardless of how small the task is. It could be advice, a recommendation or an introduction. Write an article or blog post about them on your website or contribute to theirs, share their project or news within own your communication. The gesture of reaching out to others is very rarely turned away, and research has highlighted that how being helpful, and feeling helpful, can benefit the rest of us….”doing good for others, is good for you too.”
Remember - "The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well." Ralph Waldo Emerson
While most of us can’t always control the number of ‘connections’ or friends we have at any one time, one thing we can take responsibility for is how we encourage our belief in connections, on either a social or professional level. It just takes a little courage, some inner confidence and a positive outlook of the future. Surely it can work for you too.
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