By R.E. Blake Evans. Networking with the local community is one of the most recommended ways to improve sales, most experts tell on-site sales reps. "But limit your time," says sales coach Bernice Ross, broker and president of "Networking is a 'passive' profit center," she says. "It can develop into a big time waster." She recommends calculating the number of closed transactions per year that are directly measurable from networking. If it totals less than 10 percent of all transactions, cut it out. Sales pros should spend more time on proactive activities instead: direct mail follow ups, referrals from existing buyers, "be-back" lists, and calling past visitors who put their move on hold.