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Career Networking: How Associations May Be the Answer
By Gail Sophia Edgell

You may be an excellent at networking but the true question is... are you associating with the right people in the right places? You can look up on Meetup.com any day of the week and find some sort of event going on in your area; you can even get a listing of local business associations, but determining which associations to join can be a difficult feat. The key to remember is if you get connected with the right associations and the right people, it can attract clients and increase profits which we all want in our businesses.

So here are some words of wisdom -

Commit to going to some sort of event each and every month. Most of us are not comfortable going to places where we don't know people, but unfortunately it is part of business.

Take time to research the associations or clubs. Know the reason why you want to join the meeting, club or association in the first place.

Think about these questions before you attend a meeting:

� Do you like the format of their meetings

� What types of individuals go to the meetings; could they benefit your business; can you help them

� Are the meetings at a convenient time and location for you

� How active are the participants; how many people attend each meeting

� What is the cost if you decide to join; what other ancillary costs might you incur such as meals, travel, etc.

� What are their rules of the club or association; do they require you to give a certain number of referrals at each meeting

After each meeting, take some detailed notes:

� What did you like about it

� What didn't you like

� What questions do you have about the organization, club, group

Most important make a point to get some business cards of those who already belong to the group and contact them personally.

When calling individuals, be sure to ask them all the same questions. This way, you can better measure their answers and whether the organization or group is a good fit for you.

Joining association, clubs or even going to Meet Up groups can be labor intensive and expensive, so choose wisely. Many of them can be a waste of time just for the mere fact that the person organizing it has great intentions but does not know how to run it. Yes, you can make career networking part of your marketing strategy to not only attract clients, but also increase profits. For more great free business information go to Increase Profits.

Written by: Gail Sophia Edgell

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