At the Women: Inspiration & Enterprise (WIE) Symposium Annual Conference designed to empower and inspire women, British author, freelance television and radio producer, Carole Stone gave a 20 minute workshop on networking. With over 40,000 contacts under her belt, it’s no wonder she was the right woman for the job.
However, the art of networking did not come naturally for the woman now known as the “queen of networking”, where more than a thousand of her “friends” get together and discuss various issues. She first started off in a small flat in Covent Garden were less than a dozen of her acquaintances, including former Prime Minister Tony Blair, got together once a week.
When asked how she always meets new people and manages to keep in touch with them all she simply quoted her mother: “You need to take life by the scruff of neck, like mama says.” She added, “relationships are the joint of life, how you respond to things is essential.”
“Today your work is defined by your personality” she points out. “Always make sure that when you promise something to someone you do it, it’s crucial” she added. The author of ‘Networking: The Art of Making Friends’ also insisted on the importance of small talk. “Important people tend to forget how important small talks is”, she said.
More importantly learn to accept failure. “If you ask for someone’s contact details and they refuse, you will be upset for an hour or two” she says, “but in life it’s the things you haven’t done that you will always regret for long”. She also confessed that one of her secrets to help her keep in touch with every new contact is to get in touch as soon as possible. “If you get someone’s card ring them within two days otherwise they will forget about you”. “Above all, if you go out and meet people you’ve met before but you can’t quite remember who they are always ask, never be scared to ask”, she stated.
With more than 40 years of experience in the industry, Stone’s final piece of advice is that “what will make you go far in life, is to treat others the way you want to be treated and enjoy every single moment.”
By Laetitia Woue