Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Making Introductions Effective

Whether in doing business, making friends, or finding a job, introductions are the lifeblood of social commerce. Some people take short-cuts so much that they are virtually ineffective, or even harmful. Some of the key guidelines for making introductions are:
  • Understand each person well enough to determine who they would most benefit from meeting. Don't expect them to tell you - they don't know whom you know.
  • Make the introductions "win-win." Try to make sure that each can get something from it.
  • Make "warm" introductions. Do not simply ask one party to contact a second using your name, but introduce them - whether in person, on the phone, or by email. You only win if the introduction is successful.
  • If using LinkedIn, use the phone as well to determine what is the best way to introduce - some people respond better to phone than email, or email better than to LinkedIn.
  • Follow up. Was the introduction successful? Was one party difficult, rude or simply unresponsive?

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