Freelance Notes: Building & Cultivating Your Network

Since I started doing makeup, I’ve built a new network of friends. They are so different from my normal circle of friends. They are my beauty sisters and brothers. Some of them are makeup artists, hair stylists, barbers, manicurists and clothing designers. We are all creatives. We often share the same clients. We can talk for hours on end about the latest makeup, beauty shows and clothes.

I have had the opportunity to work with many people in my network, either as their client or as teammates. We know each other on several different levels. I respect my beauty family. We keep in touch through the interwebs. We might hang out at trade shows or bump into each other shopping.

If my schedule is booked, I have a list of several makeup artists that I can refer clients to. I feel good knowing that I just helped someone in my network gain more business. I never keep tabs on who I refer to. I know that I get good business from my network. In order to receive, you must give.

Your network is essential for your success. There have been several times when I've been referred to awesome jobs because someone in my network was booked. They could decline the job; but, they thought about me. Everyone wins. Winning duh!

We are not BFF’s but respect each other’s talent and business. It’s always nice to vent to someone who understands your trouble because they just dealt with the same thing. My “regular” friends can’t always relate to my stories.

I enjoy talking to my network because I always learn something new. A new class, product, technique or show. I’m always looking for new stuff; but; I’m only one person. I don't know it all.

I don't consider none of these people my competition because we are all different. We might have the same profession; but; our talents are unique. There is more than enough work for everyone. Share. It’s the gift that keeps on giving.

Surround yourself with people who share your enthusiasm for learning and achieving  success. Those are your comrades. Keep your team tight. Stay in touch with people. Call, email, text, tweet or Facebook them. You never know. They may need you. Just be your genuine self. Give, give, give!