Business networking is a skill that is necessary for professional growth. We can't possibly have all the answers or insights without extending ourselves in different environments. The more people we connect with to seek out contrasting opinions and to engage in healthy discussions, the more opportunity we have to expand our horizons. But according to a survey reported in Forbes, the average American only confides in 2.08 people, which limits our ability to network effectively
To make up for this shortfall, many people attempt business networking on a superficial level, by attending random events (or connecting on LinkedIn just because you happened to trade business cards). According to uber networkers who can count thousands of meaningful relationships, the key to effective business networking, the kind where people share their stories with each other and get beneath the surface, is investing initially in yourself. That's right: In order to build interesting and meaningful relationships, you have to actually be interesting and passionate about something.
What matters most
Passion and interest is what drives many to pursue an online Masters of Business Administration (MBA) program. Within the parameters of the best online MBA programs, you will have many opportunities to really connect with your fellow students in projects that require much discussion and reveal the core of your background, motivations and aspirations. As you work through your classes, your stories and your interests will surface. As you become more authentic about what drives you, that authenticity will resonate with others and lead them to share similarly. Once you've gotten to this point, the opportunity for other types of connection begins to naturally surface.
Many of the people you are likely to meet through your online MBA program will go on to do amazing things in business. Years past graduation, you will be able to recall their stories, even if you have lost track of their most recent career assignment. Being able to engage with your colleagues on that deeper level, sharing your passions and your visions will spark the kind of effective business networking dialogue that opens up new avenues of possibility. Far beyond the transitory advanced business skills you'll learn in the best online MBA programs, you'll understand and be relevant in the things that matter most.
Throughout your career, you will strive to be the interesting and passionate executive who is an effective manager, leader and visionary. As you expose the foundation for your interests and passions to others in your circles of connection and influence, you will reap the benefits of true business networking.
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