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Go for the Gold: Social Networking

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By Farrah Gray, NNPA Columnist

Think of your career goals and objectives as a race. To go for the gold in your race you have to start from somewhere.

Despite today’s economic hardships, I encourage you to go for the gold in whatever it is you hope to accomplish. The first step is to use the powerful tool of networking. Effective business networking leads to building strong professional relationships and is highly beneficial in the long run.

The recent article, “Recession Got You Worried About Your Job? 6 Networking Tips for You”, on DiversityInc.com advises people to reach out to their networking circle now because the U.S. is in a recession and unemployment rates are skyrocketing.

Knowing the current state of the economy can break you if you don’t take a new direction in your life. Here are some tips on successful ways to network:

Express and utilize your passion. Your personal passion is the best guide to yourself. Whatever it is you like to do use that your advantage. Research and analyze your specific market to seek opportunities. After all, to know our strengths gives us direct access to our power. You know yourself better than anyone else, so find your niches and expand to better yourself.

Make a name for yourself. Once you’ve found opportunities in your field, use them to make a name for yourself by promoting yourself. Carrying business cards at the age of seven, lead me to become co-founder of Urban Neighborhood Enterprise Economic Club, in my hometown in South Side Chicago. It is well deserved to stand out from others and set standards to what makes unique. Be confident. Prepare an introduction speech on who you are and what you represent to other business professionals at networking functions.

This lets them know that you mean business and that you believe in yourself. It’s always good to be yourself and have a positive attitude no matter what you do in life. Take advantage of online social networks. Although some online social networks are first made with personal connections, they can lead to many professional opportunities. Online social networks allow you to connect with people that have the same interests and career objectives as you. This is a great way to get advice from people who have succeeded in your field.

Seize and conquer. Seize and conquer every networking opportunity that come your way. By networking with many business professionals you’ll be one step closer to achieving your goals. After all, your success may be to own a million-dollar corporation or to reach to the top in management at your dream company. I too have had economic hardships before reaching success, but along the way I believed in my market, my products and my contacts. I know what I know. I know how to fill the “in betweens.” Now it’s your turn to take the steps to achieving your dream and go for the gold medal waiting for you at the end of the finish line.

Farrah Gray is the author of The Truth Shall Make You Rich: The New Road Map to Radical Prosperity, Get Real, Get Rich: Conquer the 7 Lies Blocking You from Success and the international best-seller Reallionaire: Nine Steps to Becoming Rich from the Inside Out. He is chairman of the Farrah Gray Foundation. Dr. Gray can be reached via email at fg@drfarrahgray.com or his web site at http://www.drfarrahgray.com.

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