The definition of collaborate means to work together, especially on a goal or shared project.
Everyone needs to collaborate.
It’s team work, it’s mutually beneficial.
When they work, collaborations are the perfect path to solid business relationships.
One place to find people to collaborate with is through attending networking events, in person
But ‘pitching’ is boring, most people get it wrong.
…I want to get a real insight into everyone else in the room.
The only way to do that is to make our meetings more human, even more human than in the flesh.
I talk a lot about stories and a good collaboration always has a remarkable story behind it.
Hearing someone speak from an experience they’ve had, how they present themselves, their business and what they stand for is how we connect as humans.
Listen to what it is they want.
What they want will let you know how you can help them.
I make sure to introduce myself to the people I can relate to and the businesses my own services compliment.
Excellent networkers also make sure they introduce the people they meet to people that they can help.
Walking into a room of 20-30 people can be daunting so the key to a successful meeting is to be prepared.
Here’s how you can fix that.
Be prepared to help…rather than sell
Spending a bit of time researching the people in the room gives you an advantage. You have already armed yourself with knowledge about them and their businesses. You know who they target and what they are looking for, making it easier to start new conversations.
If you ask, most organisers will happily share the attendee list with you in advance of the meeting.
Can you help any of them?
In return, the true collaborators and the great networkers in the room will be thinking the same way, what they can do for you.
Without even making it a deliberate decision, you are already collaborating.
Our accountant regularly refers our services because we’ve looked after her marketing, and we regularly work on shared projects that are mutually beneficial.
This is not a relationship where money exchanges hands, more of a skills swap to reach the desired goal.
Good, clear communication is the heart of all successful collaborations.
How to collaborate successfully
Successful collaborations and collaborators rely on both sides being willing to give as much as possible.
It isn’t about give and take.
You need to have a mutual trust, a belief in a common cause, an understanding of your own strengths and weaknesses and be willing to share.
Because, giving encourages reciprocity, people are inclined to give back, so it becomes a give-give relationship.
When you go to meetings who do you go to collaborate with?
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