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From Business Cards to Business Relationships: Personal Branding and Profitable Networking Made Easy, 2nd Edition

ISBN: 978-1-118-36418-5
272 pages
May 2012
From Business Cards to Business Relationships: Personal Branding and Profitable Networking Made Easy, 2nd Edition (111836418X) cover image
Want to supercharge your life? Effective networking is the answer and this book will teach you how.

Professionals of all stripes and ages are told to 'get out there' and network so they can build their careers, grow their businesses and elevate their influence in the community, but they are rarely taught the skills to do that. Most people are lost, intimidated by the idea of presenting their own personal brand, and frustrated when it comes to networking. Despite long hours at events and attempts to make the right connections, they aren’t seeing their desired results.

From Business Cards to Business Relationships is a start-to-finish guide that demystifies the networking process and teaches readers how to truly benefit from getting connected. Allison Graham provides an easy to follow road map that is adaptable to your personality, circumstances and growth goals. You will learn how to strategically decide where to go, what to do when you get there and what to do afterwards to turn those casual business card contacts into meaningful relationships. Allison's approach is based on the Four Pillars of Profitable Networking: Perspective, Personal Brand, Procedures, and a Strategic Plan.

This is a prescriptive, practical system based on the author's real-life experience of going from unconnected to connected in a short period of time. No cheesy gimmicks or high-pressure nonsense, just the skills and knowledge that will create success for anyone willing to do the work and follow this advice. Regardless of your past experience or current level of connectivity, your industry or profession, whether you're an entrepreneur or climbing the corporate ladder: you can accomplish whatever you want by meeting and connecting with the right people. From Business Cards to Business Relationships gives you the tools you need to cement a positive personal brand and build your own profitable network.

Praise for From Business Cards to Business Relationships

"Allison Graham can help you turn an introduction into a business, a dinner into a relationship, and an average practice into world class. I've long preached that we're in a relationship business, and this book provides the handshakes, codes, actions, and routes to master those relationships."
Alan Weiss, PhD, Author of Million Dollar Consulting and The Consulting Bible

"At last—a networking book that actually makes sense! Allison Graham's four pillars of networking are as simple as they are powerful. If you are willing to follow her lead with consistent and persistent effort, you will make your mark and expand your horizons both personally and professionally."
Lou Heckler, Humorous Business Keynote Speaker and Speech Coach

"This book is an excellent and much-needed resource to share with the business community."
PJ Hartson, Business Editor, Sun Media

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Preface xi

Introduction xv

THE FIRST PILLAR OF PROFITABLE NETWORKING: PERSPECTIVE

Chapter 1: The Power of Building a Profitable Network 3

Chapter 2: What Does Having a Strong Network Mean to You? 7

Chapter 3: Expectations 10

Chapter 4: What Networking Is Not 14

Chapter 5: Understanding Business Networking 18

Chapter 6: Friendship versus Business Relationships 21

Chapter 7: Education and Connection 26

Summary 28

THE SECOND PILLAR OF PROFITABLE NETWORKING: PERSONAL BRAND

Chapter 8: Th e Business of YOU 33

Chapter 9: Overcoming Age Objections 37

Chapter 10: You Never Know Who's Watching 41

Chapter 11: Your Ideal Personal Brand 44

Chapter 12: Reality Check 46

Chapter 13: Why It Matters 49

Chapter 14: Personal Hygiene and Grooming 51

Chapter 15: Professional Wardrobe 53

Chapter 16: A Smile 57

Chapter 17: Eye Contact 59

Chapter 18: Authenticity 61

Chapter 19: Approachability 63

Chapter 20: The Tone and Pitch of Your Voice 65

Chapter 21: Sense of Humor 67

Chapter 22: Confidence: Part One 69

Chapter 23: Confidence: Part Two 72

Chapter 24: Confidence: Part Three 74

Chapter 25: Recovering from Embarrassing Situations 80

Chapter 26: Building Your Reputation 83

Summary 87

THE THIRD PILLAR OF PROFITABLE NETWORKING: PROCEDURES

Chapter 27: The Fundamentals 91

Chapter 28: Handshakes 93

Chapter 29: Name Tags 97

Chapter 30: Remembering Names 99

Chapter 31: Forgetting Names 103

Chapter 32: Dining Etiquette 105

Chapter 33: Objectives for Attending Events 110

Chapter 34: Calculating the Return on Investment for Events 112

Chapter 35: Networking Eff ectively with Spouses, Friends, and Work Colleagues 116

Chapter 36: Before an Event 119

Chapter 37: Understanding Event Flow 123

Chapter 38: Arrival 126

Chapter 39: Mingling Formula 128

Chapter 40: Initiating Dialogue 130

Chapter 41: Small, but Meaningful, Chat 133

Chapter 42: Listening 138

Chapter 43: Creating Mini-Bonds 140

Chapter 44: Exchanging Contact Information 144

Chapter 45: Moving On 146

Chapter 46: Breaking into Group Discussions 151

Chapter 47: Business Cards 153

Chapter 48: Communicating YOU 157

Chapter 49: Developing Your Own 5-10-15-Second Communication 163

Chapter 50: General Business Etiquette 166

Summary 177

THE FOURTH PILLAR OF PROFITABLE NETWORKING: STRATEGIC PLAN

Chapter 51: Now What? 181

Chapter 52: The Logical First Step 183

Chapter 53: Electronic Filing System 188

Chapter 54: Categorizing Contacts 190

Chapter 55: Relationship-Development Action Plan 195

Chapter 56: Following Up 199

Chapter 57: Transitioning from Social to Business 206

Chapter 58: Maintaining Relationships 210

Chapter 59: Tapping into Your Network 213

Chapter 60: Staying Visible 217

Chapter 61: Online Networking 220

Chapter 62: Accessing the Traditional Media 225

Chapter 63: Finding Your Focus 229

Chapter 64: Filling Your Calendar 235

Chapter 65: Analyzing the Options 238

Chapter 66: Networking Ruts 243

Summary 245

Epilogue 247

About the Author 251

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Allison Graham is a corporate consultant and keynote speaker specializing in successful business development strategies for professional service providers and small business entrepreneurs. Her company, Elevate Seminars + Strategic Development Inc. (www.ElevateBiz.com) is based in London, Ontario. Allison writes a column and blog on networking and professional growth for the Sun Media chain, and blogs for the Huffington Post. She has contributed to and been quoted in several media outlets including the Financial Post and the Globe and Mail.

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From Business Cards to Business Relationships: Personal Branding and Profitable Networking Made Easy, 2nd Edition (US $28.00)

-and- Shut Up, Stop Whining, and Get a Life: A Kick-Butt Approach to a Better Life, 2nd Edition, Revised and Updated (US $18.95)

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