Why your network should be more than just a cellphone provider

"Building up a network" is a bit of jargon you often hear among business people working in concrete jungles, but it should be considered in the home renovation trades as well.

The benefits of networking with other people in your industry are massive, while the cost to your time and skills is minimal.

Therefore, interior designers, painters, building managers and any other tradies or specifiers should think about getting in touch, and make an effort to stay in touch, with others in the profession.

Whether you're just starting out in the trade, or are already fairly well established in your career, networking has plenty to offer.

Here's why.

For a start, it's always good to have someone you can catch up with who understands the issues you encounter on a daily basis. Rather than talking to friends and family who will be sympathetic but ultimately don't know the field as well as you do, you can have a chat with someone who has either been there before and knows how to deal with the situation, or at least understands the parts at play.

Another reason is that you can pass on clients to one another. If you find yourself unable to take on a job because you are too busy, or the work isn't quite your speciality, you can refer the client on to someone in your network. Remember that they are likely to return the favour at some stage, so you're probably not missing out on business in the long run.

Knowing others in the industry will also help you keep your finger on the pulse in terms of new trends, products, ideas and advice.

So get onto LinkedIn, social media websites and attend industry events – and get connected!

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