“Your network is your net worth” - I think that’s a cheesy saying, but not devoid of truth.
Over the past year I’ve had several conversations with people in my network who are/were in transition. It was that kind of year.
I noticed that for several, this concept of a “networking” conversation/catch-up was one they had not done much of while busy with their previous jobs.
Here are 4 ideas on this:
1) Networking is for everyone
I run in circles of other entrepreneurs/business owners and a lot of salespeople whom I’ve trained. These groups know the value of networking. But it should be for everyone! So, any technical folks, analysts, managers, etc. reading this, please realize the value.
2) Don’t wait until you need it
If you think you can’t do it because you have a job and they won’t let you, you have to wake up (and find another job). Obviously, don’t be taking 2-hour lunches four times a week. But if you can’t grab coffee with someone once or twice a week for 30 minutes or join a virtual/in-person monthly group, you should evaluate your situation (or ask the thousands who learned they don't come ahead of earnings numbers).
3) Do what makes sense for YOU
There isn’t a right way or right place/group, etc. But setting some basic metrics is what the best networkers do. Make it the right number/frequency/audience for you.
4) Keep count, but don’t keep score
Track your activity, but don’t track how many times you helped someone vs. they helped you. It’s often not even and that’s life. Go in trying your best to help. Karma will sort things out later.
One of the highlights of my year last year was being able to meet a few people in person who I didn’t know until I met them on my virtual Nit-Chats.
AI is going to do a lot of things for us, but human-to-human connection is precious and deserves our focus.