One way of consciously networking is to ask a friend who already has a relationship with an individual that you would like a relationship with, to introduce you to the third party.
This essentially is what networking is all about however making a contact in this way carries with it the responsibility of ensuring that you perform well at the initial meeting, follow up well and then perform well in the business relationship as your performance will reflect back on your friend.
Before the initial meeting it is crucial that good preparation for the meeting is undertaken. You must have a clear understanding of what it is that you and your business actually do and you must be able to articulate this.
You must also be articulate in what you are looking for and how the other party can help you. You must know exactly what you want to achieve. Have a plan and know what you want the outcome to be.
Attend the meeting in a very positive frame of mind and endeavor to display your high levels of energy and enthusiasm and appear friendly.
Conduct the meeting well remembering that it is important to make a good first impression because business will be done with parties that like and respect each other.
Whilst you want the contact and help that the other party may have to offer, it is essential not to appear needy but to present your business as a helper and one that can support and assist the other party.
Following on from the meeting it is essential that there be well conducted follow up. Make contact with the other party preferably by phone.
Thank them for meeting you and pay them and their business a compliment. It is appropriate that you can ask to meet them again either formally or else informally over a meal or drink to get together and share ideas.