Tips for Mom Entrepreneurs
Copyright © Craig Warren
As a working mom, you may already feel overwhelmed,
juggling dual responsibilities of work and family. When
it comes to networking yet another task you may feel that
the time I’ve spent at networking has never really paid off.
Creating a personal and professional network is essential
for your work life success. That’s why working moms need to
approach networking with a different paradigm, explained
below as a three-part process.
Networking isn’t just about collecting business cards
from people you think may help you. It’s about planting
seeds and nurturing long-term relationships that mature
As a mom, you may understand this process well because it
calls upon the same nurturing skills you already use with
How many times have you attended networking events and seen
others jabber on about themselves and frantically hand out
dozens, if not hundreds, of their cards? This frenetic
approach only makes them look weak. As a working mom, draw
on that Mommy authority to engage in empowering, networking
* Give Adopt a giving attitude. When you meet someone ask,
How can I help you? Always think, Who could I connect them
with to help them meet their goals? It’s a natural principle:
The more you help others, the more others will help you.
* Ask Be bold. Always think, you never know what will happen
and its worth a try. If you meet a new contact and find you
have an instant connection, don’t be afraid to ask for help.
* Follow up – Getting introduced to the right people is
important, but it’s what you do after the introduction that
really counts. If you’ve felt a connection with a new contact,
phone, email or send a thank-you note within one or two days.
Then, keep in touch periodically, even if just to say, Hi, its
Efficient Use of Time
You may be thinking, Id like to stay connected with people,
but I just don’t have the time. Here are three ways to
efficiently find time to network:
* Lunch Hours Ive historically used my lunch hour, a coveted
ME time, to run errands, walk a mile or two or get my hair or
nails done. Yet, many associations and groups schedule
networking meetings during this time. So, I began to add
networking lunches. It’s a great way to preserve early morning
and evening family hours by substituting networking lunches
for breakfast meetings or evening mixers!
* Coffee/lunch over the phone My business partner, Jo Della
Penna, introduced me to the idea of networking by scheduling
coffee over the phone. What a great idea! This is a more
efficient way to meet. Plus, neither party has to invest in
driving time. When you want to spend time with a colleague,
try a relaxing lunch over the phone by scheduling a lunch
appointment, packing a lunch that day and calling at the
* Schedule in advance – Earmark your calendar to remind yourself
to re-connect with a contact periodically. If you meet a new
contact today, schedule the follow-up call for two days later
and plan a check-in email within 60 days.
Remember, the key to networking is building a relationship over
time. By using the steps above you should succeed at establishing
good relationships that empower you and your business, and yet,
don’t use hours and hours of your time.
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