Nothing can prepare you for the rollercoaster rides you’ll experience as a businesswoman. It is a tough environment where various curveballs are thrown your way, and there’s no instruction manual highlighting everything you need to know.
There are however some critical considerations if you want to be a successful business woman, which will help you navigate male dominated industries. Networking is of vital importance, especially when communicating with other business women in a shared office space
. Your networking approach more than likely caters to men, but how should you go about networking with other women?
There are many things to learn on your journey, but that’s the beauty of being a businesswoman. With a forward-thinking approach, growth and progression are inevitable. It’s important to learn from other’s journeys
, while embracing the principles outlined in this article.
Network with Women Daily
Networking shouldn’t be restricted to specific events, but instead be incorporated as part of your daily routine. You can sharpen your networking skills by practicing daily, whether you encounter businesswomen in the hallway, elevator, or even in your local supermarket! Developing good habits will help your confidence tenfold, where operating outside your comfort zone is character building. The practice of building relationships is a trial and error procedure, where like anything, the more you do it, the better you become.
Establish a Power Network
As a foundation for your networking exploits, it’s important to discover who the power players are in your niche. By doing so, you can bring the ‘who’s who’ of businesswomen
into your network, remembering you don’t have to be a power player yourself to maintain good relationships. Join professional associations, connect with mentors, and continue to elevate your day-to-day interactions. If you can create intrigue by offering something useful, forging mutually beneficial relationships becomes easier. Important businesswomen will thus be more likely to include you in their circle.
Be Open to Opportunities
You can’t always rely on hard work and dedication alone to achieve your goals. An open-minded approach
is necessary to discover new opportunities, perhaps regarding ideas you might not consider traditionally. Sometimes, the most unlikely opportunity will lead to prosperity, so even when something presents itself as left field, try to embrace it with open arms. Every opportunity is unique, and gives you a chance to develop your core capabilities. If other business women present unconventional ideas, it doesn’t hurt to at least give them some thought. There is often a domino effect where one opportunity leads to another, meaning it’s important to embrace ideals that differ from your usual principles.
Learn From Others
Stubborn business women believe they know everything, but a willingness to learn from others
is critical for development. When you realize how much you can absorb from successful people, you’ll be one step closer to reaching your full potential. Network with business women from all walks of life, to ultimately bolster what will become a diverse skill set. Networking often involves an exchange of information, where shared insight can help multiple parties make better decisions. Though you can learn from online interactions, don’t neglect the importance of physical meetings. These encourage meaningful conversations, while helping you build a rapport to capitalize on. Meet people in person, and most importantly, maintain relationships to help them flourish.
Creativity and innovation are critical to differentiate from competitors, but remember to stay relevant by keeping your finger on the pulse of your industry. With this being said, thinking outside the box can boost your longevity as a businesswoman. Taking a leap of faith is risky, but there can be huge rewards as a consequence. By thinking laterally you’ll stay ahead of the industry, and you can absorb lateral thinking principles from tried and tested business women as your network. Experiment with imaginative approaches to networking, which can be successful if you form a lasting impression.
Refresh Your Network Periodically
Though you’re probably positioned to regularly interact with businessmen, make a conscious effort to interact with industry women, ensuring your female network doesn’t grow stale. Keep your Rolodex updated, while attending regular networking events for businesswomen. You should also remain in contact with existing contacts, remembering to stay in the minds of many.
I hope you have found this article informative, and have a better understanding of how you should network with other women. If you have any questions, or would like to contribute to the discussion, please comment below and kick-start the discussion.