How to deal with the flood of LinkedIn invitations in only a few minutes?

September 27, 2008

If you are a member of LinkedIn, Ecademy, Xing, Facebook or other platforms where you can network with others, you will have experienced that you send almost the same message over and over again. For example when someone wants to connect to you or when you want to connect to someone. If you have a large network this might consume lots of your time.

Lifehacker Bert Verdonck showed me a neat and free tool that can help to deal with this. The tool is called Texter.

By the way, lifehackers are people who are looking for ways to simplify their and our lives.

What does Texter do?

It gives you the opportunity to link chuncks of texts with “hotstrings”.

For example if someone I have never heard of sends me an invitation on LinkedIn, I type “linkedin-res” (which is my own hotstring for “LinkedIn response”) and automatically the following text pops up.

“Hi,

thank you for your invitation to connect !

Unfortunately I meet so many people that I don’t always can “put the name and face together”.

Can you help me by reminding me where we met?

Thanks and … have a great networking day !

Jan”

By the way, this is actually true, so it is not just a trick. Despite the fact that I can remember people pretty well, I meet lots and lots of people so sometimes it happens that when they remind me where we met I remember them.

So the only thing I have to do is to add the name of the person who contacted me to the text. It can be a huge timesaver! By the way, ALWAYS personalize your invitations, responses and other messages (see also a previous post about this subject).

And another sidenote 🙂 When I show this in presentations or training courses, people ask me if I connect with everybody. No, I don’t. The people I don’t know I send the message above. And then it depends on their answer if I connect with them or not. People who don’t respond, obviously don’t get a positive response from me.

Of course you can use this technology also for other tasks than online networking, like answering e-mails or giving information.

Actually you can use Texter for any text you need to type in more than once and is more than a few words. It will save you LOTS of time !

Read more about Texter, download it for free and experience how you save minutes and maybe even hours a day.

On the Networking Coach website you can find more networking and referral tools that can make your life easier.

For other lifehacking tips, see Bert Verdonck’s weblog or the Lifehackers’ website.

Have a great networking day !

Jan

Founder of Networking Coach and networking speaker

Advertisements

Gratis tickets voor KMO Marketing Congres en Network Economy Congres

September 16, 2008

This post is in Dutch because it is about two events where only Dutch is spoken.

Binnenkort zijn er twee interessante evenementen: het KMO Marketing Congres en het Network Economy Congres.

Het voordeel dat ik heb als spreker is dat ik vaak een aantal mensen mag uitnodigen en op de “VIP lijst” zetten. Zo ook bij deze twee evenementen.

Maar waarom niet een aantal lezers van de blog en van de nieuwsbrief VIP maken. Of anders gezegd de VIP status op dat evenement toekennen, want voor mij zijn de lezers altijd al mijn MIPS (Most Important People) geweest 🙂

Even wat meer informatie:

KMO Marketing Congres (10 oktober, Edegem, België)

De slogan van dit congres is: Kom en ontdek hoe u op 1 dag binnen uw KMO maximale resultaten kunt behalen met een beperkt marketingbudget.

En als je naar de sprekers en onderwerpen kijkt, dan zie je dat dit geen holle slogan is: de kracht van netwerken, impact van Google op KMO business, hoe effectieve teksten schrijven, een 100 maal efficiëntere website in 10 stappen, zo haalt ook een KMO voordeel uit een relatie met de pers, kan ik als KMO verdienen aan YouTube, LinkedIn, Ecademy of Facebook?,…

Meer info: www.kmomarketingcongres.be

Network Economy Congres (15 oktober, Rotterdam, Nederland)

Ondertitel: Net-Anders-Werken. De netwerk economie wordt langs verschillende kanten bekeken in diverse presentaties en workshops.

Wat komt o.a. aan bod: Net(anders)werken … Netwerkeconomie … Lifehacking … Netwerkmarketing … Meer rendement uit netwerken … Slimmer samenwerken … Hyperlink revolutie … Sociaal kapitaal … Netwerken voor professionals … Communities … Out of the box … Networking society … Netwerkmanagement … Netwerkgame … Strategische partners … Nieuwe allianties … Personal branding …

Meer info: www.networkeconomy.buzzychain.nl/

Voor beide congressen mag ik 5 tickets weggeven. Stuur een e-mail naar connect-with-us at networking-coach.com en deel één netwerk tip voor mensen die naar een congres gaan. Uit degenen die een tip hebben gegeven worden dan de winnaars getrokken en per e-mail verwittigd.

Have a great networking day !

Jan

Oprichter van Networking Coach en spreker over netwerken


Networking Tip: Rolodex Dipping

September 13, 2008

I have been writing a few blog posts about the NSA convention and the things I learned there. This is another one 🙂

It’s something I learned from Christine Comaford-Lynch and which she also mentions in her book “Rules for Renegades“.

She calls it “Rolodex Dipping“.

This is how she describes it in the book:

“This is a fun practice when you want to connect with someone but aren’t sure who. Flip through your contact database until you find a name that makes you smile. Then call that person up just to see how he or she is. Your contact will be surprised and delighted.”

Note: if you don’t know what a Rolodex is: it is a simple system to store business cards. Not in a box, but kind of a wheel. Google it if you want to see the picture 🙂

As you could already read in a previous blog post I am an advocate of storing your contact details electronically as well.

For me this “Rolodex Dipping” works also in other ways. If I’m stuck with a project or want to have new ideas, just going through my contacts always helps. Sometimes in strange ways: by reading a name I come up with things that have totally nothing to do with hem or her.

I don’t know the psychological explanation for this (if you do, please post this so I can learn :-)), but the result is there and that’s what matters.

I have a small assignment for you: do some Rolodex, Outlook or other contact database dipping for a few minutes and see what idea comes into your mind or which person stands out from the rest. Act upon the idea you get or call that person and see what happens.

Have a great networking day !

Jan

Founder of Networking Coach


Article in Forbes: How To Network Your Way Up The Corporate Ladder?

September 10, 2008

In case you missed this in the newsletter a few weeks ago, Forbes interviewed other networking experts and me about how to network your way up the corporate ladder.

Read the article.

The reporter, Tara Weiss, also made a nice presentation of the one-hour conversation we had to go deeper into the subject:

In depth: How to Work Your Way Up (further exploration of the previous article in a semi-interactive format).

Learn and apply ! 🙂

Jan


Networking Tip: Create Trust by Keeping Commitments

September 6, 2008

I already wrote a blog post about the book and masterclass “The Speed of Trust” by Stephen Covey Jr.

He has defined 13 behaviours that create trust.

This week I experienced myself how strong they can be. More specifically number 12 is “keeping commitments”. And that’s what helped me to gain the trust of one of our customers.

Let me share a few more details with you.

I was asked by a HR Assistant Manager of a worldwide company to do a one day session to facilitate setting up a pan european network for their learning & development managers. In the absence of the HR Manager the two of us worked out the details.

When the HR Manager came back she was not really pleased that the HR Assistant Manager chose someone else than her favorite trainer. In the defence of the HR Assistant Manager: it was not communicated that that specific trainer had to do the job.

So when we explained our plan for the day to the HR Manager we had to start from “below zero”. And it took a few more e-mails, telephone calls and changes to the program, but step by step we got where she wanted to be.

The day itself went super: people were really sharing information, looking for ways to help each other out and got to know each other better. In other words: the foundation for the network was successfully made.

At the end of the day the HR Manager came to me and congratulated me with the job I had done. And she also confessed to me: “I was little bit skeptical that you could the job since I didn’t know you.” When I asked her what made her trust me and not change to someone else, she answered: “You always kept your commitments and got back to us with the right information on the days we agreed upon or before. That reassured me a lot!”

For us this keeping commitments is good business practice. This example shows how important it can be!

Networking and referrals are about building trust. An easy behaviour that anyone can show is keeping commitments.

These are a few of my rules to be able to do that without stressing myself too much or our company:

1) Only make commitments we can keep. If we are not the best to do a job or it doesn’t fit in our schedule we say “no”. You will be surprised how many people will appreciate it!

2) Set realistic timeframes to answer a question, deliver a proposal or to do something else. Even better: add a few extra days.
If you think you need 2 days, tell your customer you will be back in 4 days. In that way you give yourself extra breathing space for when something unexpected shows up. If everything goes as planned and you deliver in 2 or 3 days then you have reacted faster than they expected. This scores bonus points.
On the other hand: if you promise to deliver in 2 days and it becomes 3 or 4 days you take away from your emotional bank account.

How about you? How good are you in making the right commitments and keeping them? Do you have some “rules” for yourself?

Have a great networking day !

Jan

Founder of Networking Coach


%d bloggers like this: