I sat down with James Swanwick, cohost of ESPN Sportscenter Australia, where I asked him about his method of networking. I first met James in Colombia, where he emailed asking to meet for coffee. I have a lot of meetings with readers of mine, and I found James very interesting and friendly—he asked about me for 10-15 minutes, before ever talking about his own projects.
So when I asked him what he was working on, it blew me away. He is the cohost of ESPN sportscenter, and he spent years working as a celebrity journalist, interviewing people like Cindy Crawford, Joaquin Phoenix, and the Olsen Twins.
James’s method of networking is awesome—the day after we met, he sent me SIX emails with amazing content in all of them. Check out the video to learn exactly how James meets his heroes, adds value to their lives, and connects with the people he wants to meet.
* James first looks for mutual friends. Can someone send a co-introduction?
* If there is no mutual friend, attempt to make mutual friends. Or, have a good reason to meet them.
* At some point, you just have to send an email or make the phone call—don’t be afraid
Step Two – Interacting at the meeting
* Once you’re there, you have to make sure the meeting goes well
* James spends the first 10-15 minutes only talking about the other person. He listens, asks questions, and learns from them, never talking about himself.
* After a while, the person will naturally start asking about his business. Only then will he bring up his stuff.
* He spends the majority of his time asking how HE can help the person. Who can he connect his hero with? How can he add value?
* Everything he says he will send/do, he makes sure to write it down, so he will actually do it.
Step Three – The Followup
* The followup is HUGE. If you don’t followup, you’ve wasted the meeting.
*** James’s followup is intense—he sent me 6 emails the day after. One email was a followup to all the topics we had talked about that day. The other 5 emails were summaries of books that he thought would benefit me. He took the time to take notes, type the books up, and send them over. This left a HUGE impression on me.
* Continue to stay in contact, and continue to add value.