There is no place like home and running a business from home makes it better.
It’s comfortable, safe, entertaining and most importantly you know everyone that is there.
You can easily be yourself and not have to meet anybody’s expectations if you don’t want to.
Sure, we compromise when we live with others and we do what we can to keep peace, but they know who we are at the end of the day and there are no false pretenses.
To grow our businesses and meet others, we hop on social networking sites and build relationships with others. Don’t you just love all the people you now know that you never would have met were it not for the internet and social marketing?
It’s amazing right.
I often think how warm and fuzzy it can be, especially when you land in groups where people are genuinely concerned about you and your business. I love my Carnie group…a great water cooler. Over time we continue to learn more and get to know each other.
Being a part of a group of like-minded people that you trust and admire is definitely an advantage and helps in relieving stress and enhances growth. They provide feedback, tools and resources that contribute to the enhancement of one’s knowledge.
But, live interactions and getting involved in live networking groups are still necessary to help our businesses grow. Everyone is NOT socially active online.
There is no opportunity for you to know them or for them to know you.
Sometimes You Have To Run Away
For some of us, we have been hiding behind our computers so long we forgot how to get out and network if our type of business does not require us to leave the house.
Nothing can replace that handshake and interaction that takes place when you meet a person face to face and spend time with them. Human interaction is still necessary.
There are some people that are in business and have no clue about social networking, and don’t want to be a part of it. They want to meet and greet people up close and personal.
How will you meet them if you are at home all of the time?
Even if you are shy, and more of an introvert, it just may be time to step out and strut your stuff to the world in person.
If you are successful via social media networking, that is great and it means people are watching you.
If not, your niche may not be active online, and you may have to step out and meet them face to face. Everyone does not have an online presence.
I have a relatively new client who is expecting to grow her business via social media, but it is not working yet. Primarily because she is so new online she does not have many connections, and trying to find them is difficult.
She has also tried advertising via radio ads and that has not worked either. She has a non-profit that can utilize fundraising online, but to meet the clients that need her services, she needs to attend in person events and get connected with social service networks in addition to online social networking.
Run Away and Locate Local Events
If it’s time to grow and online social networking is not enough – take a leap of faith and visit a local networking event.
Of course you can always search and find local networking events, but I wanted to bring a few to your attention:
This is a great site to find all types of events in your local network. You select your city and input the keywords for what you are looking for.
Ever heard of tweetups – twitter based meet ups. This site helps provide events and groups. You can search by the most popular and trending events and it’s a great way to find those businesses that are very active on Twitter.
For younger professionals that often meet at upper scale and stylish clubs that combine networking and partying at the same time!
I believe in Starbucks too…coffee shops have always worked well for me in various cities. For a few years, I could not decide what city I wanted to settle in.
I needed an outlet to get out of the house not knowing anyone in the city, as well as a place to meet other business people. In one city, I probably visited 10 different Starbucks and met at least 5 new business people as a result.
I also believe if you are a little shy and not confident in your abilities to approach someone about your business, try a coffee shop first to practice your skills and develop/test your opening description of your business. Practicing on friends can’t hurt either.
Running away can be fruitful and fun, but don’t forget to go home!
What has been your largest obstacle to live networking? Have you run away from working at home lately?
This post is part of our monthly Word Carnival. This months topic is “Rediscover the Real World: Unplug, Unwind, Unleash“. Check out other discussions with my fellow carnies (my favorite group) here.