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Success Advice

6 Strategies To Build A Powerful Network Around You

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Without trying to brag, one thing I have been told I do really well is network and connect with influential people. So, I thought I would share my thoughts around some things I have learnt along the way so you can improve your own skills and learn something new.

Building a strong network has many different benefits but most of all, it will determine whether you are successful or not. There is no way you can become an entrepreneur and be involved in a successful business venture without a team of people or advisors around you.

“Your network equals your net worth”

Being an entrepreneur comes down to the ability to be able to sell goods or services, and to be able to sell something you need customers. Your first customers (and probably your highest revenue clients) will most likely come from your close network.

These valuable customers will help you then create a revenue stream that will fund your vision and allow you to share yourself with the world. Networking is often over-thought, and way too many people try too hard. Networking is just the process of having conversations with other people. That’s it!!!

Don’t get hang up on trying to impress people, but at the same time, make sure you demonstrate your value without sounding like a wanker.

If you follow my top six strategies below for building a powerful network, then you will be able to connect with people, build a business or hang around great people with ease.

 

1. Look for two-way value exchange

This is my number one tip, and it’s missed by so many people that I meet on a daily basis. If you want to bring someone into your network, then you need to look for a two-way exchange of value. This means it can’t just be about you getting something; you need to find some value that you can deliver as well.

In a two-way exchange of value, ideally, you would show your value first by looking for something that could help the person you are trying to connect with. It takes a bit of digging but if you ask open-ended questions, and shut up and listen for the answer, you will easily discover how you can help them.

Every day I get emails from people wanting to meet up for an hour to ask me about something. While I think of myself as a friendly guy, if I said yes to every request I would have no hours left in the day. What these cold outreaches are missing is a compelling story (not long winded) of how we can help each other and create mutual value.

When you ask yourself the question “how can I help” every time you reach out, your results will increase substantially. Some people tell me that they don’t think they have much value. This limiting belief is rubbish, and everyone has something to offer, and skills they can bring to the table.

Remember what you love, how you earn a living, and the things you are good at and there will definitely be value you can offer inside of you somewhere.

 

2. Nail your 30-second elevator pitch

This can take time to perfect, but you will be doing it heaps so you’ll get used to it. To build a powerful network you need to be able to quickly and succinctly communicate what you do, why you do it, and the types of people you like to connect with.

Many people I meet fail to do this, and it takes them thirty minutes or more to explain themselves. What a 30-second elevator pitch does is provide a sample of who you are and then if done right, it should allow the person you’re talking with the option of opting in to hear more if they choose to.

The problem I see with most introductions is that there is no opt in, and you are forced to listen even when you can’t provide value or are not interested in knowing more. You have to learn that not everyone will love what you do, and that’s fine.

The great thing about a 30-second elevator pitch is that it removes all the people who are not relevant to your mission and only leaves the raving fans.

An example of my 30-second elevator pitch:

“I am involved with one of the top motivational / entrepreneur sites on the internet called Addicted2Success. The team love what we do, and it’s why I get out of bed in the morning. Day to day I work in finance helping overseas tech companies enter Australia and support their growth. I am obsessed with personal development and entrepreneurship, and I believe both skills can change the world for good.”

 

3. Be highly trusted

Powerful networks are not easy to build, but one of the quickest ways to accelerate the growth of a network is by being highly trusted. This means that you need to become known as the guy that can be trusted with confidential information.

In my network, I have a few high profile people who tell me things that are very confidential. I never share these secrets with anyone. On rare occasions, I might know someone who could add value to the secret, and so I ask the originator if I can share it.

The simple act of asking permission will help build you as someone who can be trusted. There are too many people out there who will just share information that is confidential without thinking twice. By not engaging in this bad habit it’s easy to build trust within your network and to quickly grow it.

 

4. Don’t say yes to everyone

Every social interaction you have in your personal and business life will have an opportunity to bring someone new into your network. If you say yes to bringing new people in constantly then you run the risk of over-committing yourself and not hitting the other points I mentioned earlier like being highly trusted.

Many people have broad networks, but they are so broad that there is no depth, which means the chance of two-way value creation, is very low. When you meet someone new, if you are not instantly into what they have to say then your default decision to stay in touch should be no.

It’s funny, this exact situation happened to me recently, and then I tried another two interactions with this same person and realised I was actually wrong. The person I was talking with hit all my criteria; it was just a case of them having a very strong Italian accent, and me not reading up about them in Google in depth enough.

While this is not the norm, it’s always worth being open-minded and reversing your decision to bring someone into your network when logic warrants it. A nice way to not say yes to everyone but still make other people feel good is to connect with them on social media instead.

By connecting on social media, you have created distance yet left the door open in case anything changes in both of your situations. So to recap, be careful who you let into your network and don’t say yes to everyone, there is no need and you don’t have the time to be keeping up appearances.

 

5. Stay in touch every three months

Once you have established a solid network you are going to have many different layers. The layer you should concentrate on though is the people you want to be closest to you. This layer of close people will only remain close though if you keep in contact with them.

With that said, I aim to catch up with my inner network contacts every three months. It’s amazing what you can miss and how many projects are occurring where you can add value. Keep in mind that if you have a few highly successful people in your network, regular meetings every week could really use up their time and put them off being connected with you.

The best way to avoid this issue is always to be respectful of people’s time. Tell your inner network how much you appreciate their time and always remind them of the value you can bring as a bonus for them knowing you.

“The value you bring to your inner network should almost be tattooed on your face. Inside your inner network, you should aim to be top of mind for your most valuable three skills”

 

6. Do lots of meaningful introductions

Part of creating a powerful network involves actually doing introductions to other people. I don’t see a lot of people do this, but your ability to be proactive and make valuable introductions is crucial to your networks success.

Where I see this one go wrong though is where people don’t ask permission before introducing. I have also seen people make poor introductions because they are not good matchmakers. This takes practice, but the key is to ask for permission before doing an intro and to ensure there is value for both people.

The other tip on this is to make sure that if you are introducing someone high profile, you always tell them about the possible intro beforehand to ensure it’s someone that is of interest to them.

Tim Ferris explains in one of his podcasts that the reason why he gave up being involved in startups is that too many people just blindly introduced people by email where there was no synergy and no consent. So remember guys; think before you intro someone!

The final thing to remember when doing intros is to make sure you do them quickly. If you are at an event, and both people are present, then do the intro right away. If it has to happen offline, then do the email intro straight away before you forget. Lots of people promise to intro but most forget.

What are your tips for building a network? How do you like to be introed? Share your tips in the comment section below or feel free to reach out to me on Facebook or Twitter.

Tim is best known as a long-time contributor on Addicted2Success. Tim's content has been shared millions of times and he has written multiple viral posts all around personal development and entrepreneurship.You can connect with Tim through his website www.timdenning.net

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4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. Raymond Chidanyika

    Mar 23, 2016 at 8:35 pm

    very insightful piece, we often are confined by the walls that we will be around ourselves i.e. the kind of people surrounding us..

    • Tim Denning

      Mar 29, 2016 at 3:26 am

      Thank you Raymond!

  2. Charlene Rhinehart

    Mar 22, 2016 at 3:46 am

    Thanks for sharing this article, Tim! We often think about the importance of networking and often forget about the importance of building a relationship in order to create meaningful interactions. I like your point about staying in touch every three months. This is a great way to start building a valuable relationship and learn how you can exchange information in order to create a win-win situation.

    • Tim Denning

      Mar 22, 2016 at 8:41 am

      Thanks Charlene for reading and glad you got value. The three month point is probably the one that I see people do least. It’s simple but effective.

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Success Advice

3 Reasons Why Getting Clear Is Important for Your Business

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clarity
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Everyone goes through times in their lives where blue skies and sunshine are a rarity. Too many clouds and storms, whether they involve business or personal issues, become the everyday occurrence and keep people from achieving whatever they want to do.

There have been many times on this business journey of my own where fogginess and haze have sent me to the mat. Trying to kick out at a 2-count when being pinned with all of this stuff seems unbearable.

In taking a holistic view (meaning looking at the entire picture) of where I am, what has changed? Clarity. Getting very clear on what I want to do and where I want to focus my creative direction. Yes, I’m a writer, content writer, copywriter, ghostwriter and creative. That’s one element of my own life. Another one involves being a voice for the voiceless in the craniofacial community around the world.

But this is not to simply focus on what I am doing now. This is about clarity, about getting laser-focused on what you want to do. If you have a coach or mentor in your life, then I’ll bet you have heard them say on one or multiple occasions that you have to “get clear” on what you want to offer.

Here are three core reasons clarity is an important factor for your business:

1. You Stand Out From The Crowd

You cannot go anywhere on social media and not see people putting out content. Some may be good; others are meh. It does not matter, though, if it is good or not. What matters is about conversion. Does the content turn into sales? Does it attract and speak to people’s problems?

Not everyone can be a jack-of-all-trades. You become a master-of-none pretty quick. Theories abound about niching down and finding that sweet spot where you can deliver your mastery to those in need. Think of the millions of niches out there: cannabis, fitness, spirituality, relationships, finances, food, and on it goes.

Every one of these niches need people who can come in and put clarity around their products and services. If these businesses are not clear on what they do and solve to those seeking solutions, then they are not going to have clients and eventually will have to shut the doors.

Learning to stand out from the crowd is going to make you a powerful voice in whatever niche or field you are looking to dominate in all the time.

“It’s a lack of clarity that creates chaos and frustration. Those emotions are poison to any living goal.” – Steve Maraboli

2. You Attract A Lot of Clients

If you wanted to apply one of those ancient universal laws to your business – for instance, like the very popular Law of Attraction – then you would understand what attracts people to you. Nikola Tesla, one of the world’s greatest inventors, once said that if people understood energy and vibration alone and how that works then they’d understand a lot of how things actually work in the world.

Clarity brings out a new energy from your words and actions. You come from a place of total and unbelievable awareness where you look around one day and go, “Dang, look at all of the people who want my services.”

Trust me. This is one of those lessons that I have to come back to over and over again. People might know who I am and what I do from this or that space. Yet is it really crystal clear enough to a targeted section of people? Um, it’s still a work in progress.

In order, though, to actually move forward in business and have the level of success that I desire, then clarity must come into play. Clarity attracts clients. They solidly know what you do and what you offer. There’s no wishy-washy stuff taking place. Understand this core reason to achieve clarity and watch what happens to your very own business and brand.

3. You Begin To Believe In Yourself

There’s this ongoing idea around “imposter syndrome” that folks on the interweb love to discuss. Showing up online like you are a real go-getter and hotshot, but offline that’s not the same person…that’s a problem.

“Imposter syndrome,” to me, starts happening when a person stretches out of his or her comfort zone and it feels miserable. Instead of getting up at 11 a.m. after working a night shift job, you get up at 8 a.m. to get a head-start on tasks and obligations around what you do. Thoughts like “this will never work out” or “I’m never going to succeed and get out of debt” start swirling around your mind like a bunch of chattering monkeys.

Clarity, though, allows you the benefit of starting to truly believe in yourself. In his famous book “The Power of Positive Thinking,” Norman Vincent Peale writes in the first chapter’s first line “Believe in yourself.” That’s it. Then the book goes on to describe different ways of building up your positive mindset through prayer, faith, action, and other real-life examples. Peale’s work may not appeal to you directly, but the mere thought of believing in yourself and your dreams is appealing.

“Clarity comes from action not thought.” – Marie Forleo

Find yourself getting clear on what you want and where you want to go and begin to truly believe in yourself and your abilities. There are lots of people who definitely need your services and work around the world. There might even be people right in your own town who do, too.

When tackling the issue of clarity for your business, take these three factors into account. Think about them seriously. Take stock around where this can be an effective place for you to succeed every single day.

Look for the sunshine and blue skies in your business. They are there. All you have to do is some sightseeing and all of it will pop out very clearly.

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Success Advice

How YOU Can Create a Powerful 10 Year Life Vision

Ashley Hann

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Where do you desire to be 10 years from now? Joel Brown, founder of the well-known website and podcast Addicted2Success, breaks down exactly how to gain clarity in your life and create a powerful 10-year life vision. The vision process that Joel teaches has transformed the lives of hundreds and thousands of people who use it.

You can listen to the full podcast interview here with Joel Brown or head over to my website AshleyHann.com for more inspirational podcast episodes.

Joel Brown is the real deal. He travels the world coaching thousands and thousands of people to stand in their vision so they can turn their dreams into a reality. He has been featured in the Think and Grow Rich movie, Entrepreneur, Forbes, Inc., The Huffington Post, Success Magazine and more. He has sat down with well-known thought leaders such as Tony Robbins, Deepak Chopra, Jay Shetty, Gary Vaynerchuk, Grant Cardone, John Assaraf and the list goes on.

This is a MUST LISTEN episode all about gaining clarity, creating harmony in your life and creating a powerful 10-year vision so that you can live the life you’ve always wanted.

Joel Brown (Founder of Addicted2Success.com)

Joel breaks it down for you step by step. In this episode, we go over:

  • The 3 key questions you must ask yourself in order to live a fulfilled life and master your 10-year vision
  • How to define success for yourself and discover what you really want
  • The 8 areas of life to include in your 10-year vision
  • The top, prevalent patterns successful people share and why you should adopt them too
  • The 3 main limiting beliefs and bullsh*t stories that hold people back from achieving their dreams and goals
  • Why dropping perfectionism is so important and what to do instead
  • …and so much more!

If you’re more of a visual person then you can watch my video interview with Joel Brown here:

This is an episode you won’t want to miss. Joel Brown is the 10-year vision expert and teaches his vision process all over the globe to thousands and thousands of people. You’ll want to make sure to grab a pen and paper so you can take notes and action on the strategies he shares with you.

You can connect with Joel Brown @iamjoelbrown on Instagram and Twitter.  Make sure you also check out his popular motivation account @addicted2success on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

You can listen to the full episode on SoundCloud,Apple Podcasts or Spotify.

OR you can watch it on my YouTube Channel:

RESOURCES:

His event: www.elevatetribe.net

The #1 motivation website he built from scratch: www.addicted2success.com

His Circle of Influence online mastermind: www.iamjoelbrown.com/applynow

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Success Advice

5 Ways You Can Utilize Information Properly and Think More Efficiently

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The mind is a complex system of facets, of which some have yet to be discovered. Still, in spite of all this, there has been enough information to help us gain a rudimentary understanding of it. Thinking is what we all do, although what differs is the efficiency and levels at which we do it.

A lot of things influence the way you think, and most of these factors vary from person to person. However, there are some foundations and basic laws that can help you move from just filtering information and utilizing it to think efficiently.

Below are a few ways you can utilize information properly and think more efficiently:

1. Be quiet and listen

We’re constantly bombarded with information, and the nature of this information determines how we respond. Are you the type of person who doesn’t handle bad or even good news well? If so, learn to take a step back, evaluate things, and look for the way forward. It’s something that stock market traders do all the time, and it works like a charm with practice.

2. Never neglect what your emotions tell you

While a lot of people might not know this, it is true that the conscious thoughts we have only represent a small fraction of the events going on in our heads. At any given point in time, you have the unconscious aspect taking in massive amounts of information, most of which we don’t even know are being processed.

Your brain makes conclusions, good or bad, and starts to generate feelings that rule our emotions in the long-run. So, whenever you have a subtle feeling that points you to a certain course of action or thought, don’t ignore it. At the end of the day, that feeling gets its way somehow, and it’s better you come face-to-face with it and understand its nudges better.

“When you react, you let others control you. When you respond, you are in control.” – Bohdi Sanders

3. Never think while under pressure

Pressure can be good, but a lot of the time, it tends to yield counter-productive results. Regardless of what you’re doing, there are times when you feel pressure. What this pressure does is force you to rely less on the part of your unconsciousness that functions like a trained autopilot system (from all of the training and experiences that you’ve had in the past). Essentially, it forces you to overthink things.

You begin to analyze every aspect of what you’re doing, and you end up using parts of your brain that have no business with the specific activity. So, whenever you take the time out to develop a certain skill, make sure you learn to have faith in your instincts as well.

4. Never focus on one viewpoint

Bluffing is something that professional poker players do almost every time. It’s become an art. However, instead of just bluffing on a whim (which also works at times, by the way), most of them employ a simple trick while playing; they think about how the opposing players would act if they weren’t actually bluffing.

In most cases, the brain tends to search the world for filters in order to confirm the beliefs that it holds. However, the problem with this is that it tends to limit you. At the end of the day, you could be dealing with facts that are just not wrong.

“What’s true of the poker game is true of life. Most people are suckers and don’t realise it.” – Michael Faust

5. What do you love doing?

According to studies, a lot of people tend to have moments of insight and solutions to problems when they’re not even aware of the fact that the problem is being analyzed by the brain. These are usually moments when you take a stroll, listen to your favorite track, brew your favorite coffee, take showers, and read blogs; when you feel relaxed and comfortable.

This is because insightful thoughts are usually generated by an influx of neural activities that occur in the right hemisphere of the brain. The best time to plug into the mind is when you’re stress-free, so make sure that you engage in activities that relax you more often.

How do you go about maneuvering around and making decisions in a world constantly bombarding you with information? Let us know your thoughts and advice below!

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Success Advice

10 Simple Yet Effective Ways to Bring Out the Successful YouTuber in You

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YouTube is a social media platform that has turned many a normal person into a celebrity. With over 1.9 billion logged-in users visiting YouTube every month, it is a hugely popular platform that is being actively used by people who are leveraging its reach and popularity for reputation building, increasing visibility, creating and driving brand reach and last but not the least, earning money.

We keep hearing success stories of YouTube influencers who were nobodies when they started out and today run some of the most popular channels on YouTube and are considered reputed influencers in their niche.

There is absolutely no doubt that if done right, a presence on YouTube can be a massive boost for your brand (if you are a business) and ensure visibility of stratospheric proportions (if you are an individual).

But, at the end of it all, most people want to get onboard YouTube for the money. If your channel is popular enough, it can be a regular source of income for you. So, how do you become a successful YouTuber and establish a popular YouTube channel?

Here are ten great tips to help you on your way:

1. Identify your YouTube Goals

What do you want to achieve out of YouTube? Straight off the block, this is the question you must answer. YouTube can help build your brand, both business and personal, if that’s your goal. It will help improve your reputation and differentiate yourself from the competition. It could also become a revenue generation medium for you.

There are many reasons you might want to start a YouTube channel, and you need to zero in on the right one. Identifying your core goal or set of goals will help you plan your YouTube journey effectively.

2. Identify the Right Niche for Your Channel

Making videos is a resource-intensive activity. It also needs a rare degree of passion to make videos because you are going to put a truckload of effort into it. So, make sure to zero in on the right niche for your channel, meaning the kind of video content you are going to post. If you are an individual, the content must align with your interest, preferences, skill sets and knowledge.

If you are a business, it must align with your business’s services or domain. Think very carefully whether you will be able to keep making videos about a specific topic, subject or domain regularly. This will help you choose the right ‘content type’ for your channel.

3. Trust Yourself

There are some YouTubers who give up because they think they are not cut out to be successful YouTubers. There is absolutely no doubt, you will be wracked by self-doubt when you start, especially if your videos aren’t finding enough traction. The key here is to have confidence in your ability and pursuing your end goal indefatigably.

Don’t give up because of setbacks; some of the top YouTubers started off slowly and built their audience steadily. When it comes to YouTube, it is important to understand that success won’t come easily or quickly.

4. Be Prepared for Criticism

As a YouTuber, you have the ability to showcase your knowledge and skillsets to the world, but this also sets you up for criticism. There are people who are going to like your videos and there are those who won’t and will go a step further and criticize it through the comments section.

And very often, this criticism isn’t constructive and its only aim is to make fun of you and your video. Can you handle this criticism? You must if you want to be a successful YouTuber. Try developing a thick skin and don’t allow even the most virulent criticism to affect you.

5. Respond to Comments

Make it a habit to respond to comments, irrespective of whether these appreciate or criticize your video. Your response tells your viewer that you care and are prepared to listen to their views. This helps you build a relationship with your viewers who can then turn into channel subscribers. Don’t think YouTube videos are one-way traffic wherein you make a video, a viewer sees it and forgets about it. A video is a means of driving interaction and engagement.

6. Follow other YouTubers

You might have some great content ideas for your channel, but you must also keep track of what other YouTubers are doing. There is always a chance that you will get some inspiration from their videos as to how to make a video more interesting, get the lowdown on audience engagement tactics and find technical aspects as well including camera work, audio etc.

7. Attend Meetups

There are plenty of YouTube meetups, conventions and conferences happening all over the world; it is imperative that you attend YouTube events happening in your region. This way you will be able to meet fellow YouTubers in the region, and who knows, you might also meet YouTubers, you follow and want to emulate. If you get the opportunity to discuss notes or get tips, do so. This will help refine your channel content

8. Keep Measuring Your Performance

Start measuring your YouTube performance from the word go. You need to keep track of various performance metrics to know how well you have done. A metric like ‘views’ is super important but so is ‘watch time’. ouTube judges the performance of your channel on various metrics and uses these to rank your videos in search results. There are plenty of tools that can help you track and measure YouTube performance based on various parameters.

9. Don’t Judge Yourself Too Harshly

Don’t set impossible standards for yourself. You are going to make mistakes and learn from them. No video is perfect and don’t think you can start making amazingly successful videos from day one. So, judge yourself, but don’t go overboard. Don’t compare your work with people who have many years of YouTube experience behind them; this would be counterproductive and play havoc with your confidence levels.

10. Keep at It

If you want to bring out the successful YouTuber in you, you must keep at it. Plan a video publishing schedule and stick to it, irrespective of whether your videos are doing well or not. Remember, once you set cadence, you will get better at your videos, and this will drive more engagement.

A successful YouTuber is no different from a successful person. You need to work hard, learn from mistakes, and more importantly learn from others. And you must make use of all this learning to create better and more more engaging videos.

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