Keeping it real, no – really!
This time last week I was at The Networking Retreat run by Stef Thomas.
I’d booked my place pretty much as soon as Stef released the dates – I knew I needed to invest some time & energy into my networking – much as I love it, I felt I was in a rut – no new prospects coming in, no clear vision of a way forward that would be beneficial to my business.
So, no pressure then Stef – off you go & fix all that in a day & a half.
Well of course I didn’t expect that – but I also didn’t expect to be challenged as much as I was either. Having been actively networking for well over 5 years, there were certain elements of my networking behaviour I thought I had nailed.
I am a confident public speaker – well used to speaking & presenting at events from conferences at Olympia to 4N meetings in Lincolnshire. I actually enjoy getting up in front of large groups of people & presenting – which I should do – if I didn’t, then I’d be in the wrong job!
But having the time & the focus to really pull apart my elevator pitch really made me realise why I wasn’t getting great traction from it. Having the support, not just from Stef, but also from the other members of the group to really drill down & find a pitch that said what I wanted to say was fantastic.
Going to the retreat also gave me time to think about the ‘why’ of my business. Not something that many business owners get to do regularly as you are busy in your business a lot of the time, rather than focusing on your business.
It’s taken me the best part of this week to really think about the impact The Networking Retreat has had, not only on my networking, but on how I feel about my business all together. There are changes ahead – but changes I feel massively positive about having had the opportunity to think them through, and decide on a path that works for me & for my business going forward.
And as part of that, I’m now committed to talking more about what I do, and how well I do it (and if you want more help with that, you need to speak to Chris Marr at The Content Marketing Academy), as well as restructuring a few things to reflect where I want to be in my business in 12 months time.
So – in a nutshell, I’ve written this post to answer the question put to me at my networking meeting this week – ‘yeah, but you’ve been networking for ages, was it really worth it?’.
Yes. Yes it was.