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Lucy Rosen with Claudia Gryvatz Copquin
Franklin Lakes, NJ: Career Press 2010
In Fast Track Networking, Lucy Rosen shares networking tips from more than two decades of organizing networking events. Many of these tips can be found in other books and blogs: wear your nametag on your right side, act as a host, and follow up. Where Fast Track Networking goes into more depth than other books I've read, however, is how to set up and run a networking group (also known as a mastermind group). Rosen includes step-by-step planning, sample forms, and a plan for following up.
In addition, she also provides several examples of referral sheets, which are short descriptions of how you help other people and what an ideal client looks like. I've come across that advice before, but printed referral sheets (as she suggests in her book) can be much more effective than the verbal descriptions I've seen encouraged in other books.
If you're tired of going to yet another networking event with too many people, you may want to read this book for tips on smaller-scale, more intimate networking.
Plans: After the wedding, I'd like to experiment with one of the techniques she describes: inviting up to a dozen people out to have dinner at a restaurant. People pay for their own meals, but they come for the conversation and the potential connections. I've thought about doing that in the past, but I decided to host people instead because I could bring people together for more relaxed conversation (and for less money!) than we could in a restaurant or cafe. I find that I host these get-togethers infrequently, though, and perhaps alternating with eating out might be good for convenience as well as for expanding the circle of conversation.