Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Some people are great at networking. They can enter a room full of strangers at a professional conference and walk out a short time later with a plenitude of new best friends. They're the exception since most people - lawyers as much if not more so than many other professionals - really dislike networking finding it either socially uncomfortable or unseemly. But that's irrational thinking according to this post from Attorney@Work. If you went to law school to help people, then what better way to find out who in the room really needs your help other than networking? It's all a matter of perception and finding a way to re-frame for yourself the experience of networking.
Unfortunately, most lawyers aren’t particularly excited about the idea of networking. Even lawyers who’ve taken steps to get help with business development will object, inevitably, when it’s time to test their networking ability. Two primary fears seem to be the basis for their lack of enthusiasm and their objections. So let’s take a look at why those fears are unfounded.
Legal Services Are Not Used Cars
As soon as attorneys hear the term “networking,” their imaginations start to run wild. They envision used-car salespeople hawking automobiles, probably with tampered-with odometers. Next comes the objection I’ve heard countless times: “I didn’t go to law school to be a salesperson.”
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Fear of Seeming Disingenuous
“This all sounds pretty disingenuous to me. Won’t the other person know that getting together for lunch is simply a pretense for me to try to get business?” Well, kind of. But don’t worry about it. Experienced networkers recognize that effective networking is all about how people can help each other—professionally or even personally.
Learn how to debunk both of these fears by continuing to read here.