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The 11 Laws of Likability

Relationship Networking … Because People Do Business with People They Like

By Michelle Tillis Lederman
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  • Contains 8 key ideas
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The 11 Laws of Likability by Michelle Tillis Lederman

The 11 Laws of Likability (2011) is a guide to networking built on one simple fact: people do business with people they like. These blinks will explain how to discover your most likable characteristics, start conversations and keep them going, and make a lasting positive impression on people.

Key idea 1 of 8

To be likable, you have to focus on connecting with people honestly.

Most of our lives depend on our relationships. And whether they’re of a professional or personal nature, our relationships support and connect us. But how does that fact relate to networking, a term we so often see in the modern business world?

Since our networks develop as a result of our relationships, “networking” simply describes the way in which we build new relationships. It comes down to liking someone and getting her to like you.

So when you’re networking, try to recognize what’s likable about the other person as well as yourself. Find out what’s likable about others by asking questions – whether about the person’s life, opinions, beliefs, job or hobbies – and then listen actively.

Although likability is as subjective as everyone is different, the basic premises of likability are the same across the board. These basic forces can be boiled down to eleven laws of likability that we’re about to delve into one by one.

Before we start, it’s important to keep in mind that networking is about wanting to connect with others, not just achieving a particular result. In fact, some people react negatively to the word networking, thinking of it as a test they have to take to win people over.

So it’s only logical that, if networking feels like a chore to you, it’s hard to find the motivation to do it, much less to do it well. Contrary to the popular belief that you should have a specific objective in mind when beginning a relationship, you shouldn’t be thinking about takeaways when getting to know someone.

In fact, instead of making networking about transactions, you should make it about connections. It will benefit both you and the people you speak to. After all, the only way to make yourself likable is by being honest and authentic.

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