Breaking Into the Network
Nobody likes networking. It is awkward, uncomfortable, and painfully reminiscent of high school prom. We all know the flood of self-consciousness that comes as you put on your best fake smile and sling business cards around a table of strangers. But while some hope and pray for a better way, others make it happen.
I contend that networking isn’t about sales, promotion, or schmoozing. Networking is about building lasting connections – building relationships. And today I spent my lunch hour introducing a dozen Tampa Bay professionals to networking comfortably and effectively. I taught them how to network like spies.
Spies follow three simple rules: 1. Don’t talk about yourself, 2. Find a common Bond, 3. Get a second meeting. Effective Networking follows the same rules. I saw a dozen people discover their networking potential today with these rules. Will you find your own potential?
I absolutely loved this post you did, last year someone gave me some great advice. If you want something you have never had in your life, you need to do something you have never done. For me this was friends and I said I simply never talk to people. So stupid, but so powerful as you talk about. It was even the same for me that moment in high school asking that girl you like to date.
I started simply with connecting with someone that was a core part of who I am, a dad. We would always go to the park with my kids and I would see other dads, but I would resist the desire to talk for all the reasons you already know. But that small little action started to build confidence and I started to expand to check out lines and where I really enjoy this is when I fly.
I have some moments where the universe is sending a hint to me that this person could be of interest. The first example was a woman who was reading a mediation book and it was something that I had started to research as well. Usually I would have resisted the desire to talk, but this time I said f that and i decided to talk. It was my first big win and we talked for almost 3 hours and found a great connection between our paths in life.
This whole experience has led me to believe one strong truth. We are only ever one conversation away from something amazing coming into our life and changing it.
Thank you Andrew for bringing this message to the internet.
Ben – thanks so much for your comment! It is so powerful when people reach out with a real life example of how personal connection changed their life. Like you, I too have seen the impact of conversation and will never go back to my silent ways 👍
Sounds like this would be a great book
That is exactly the plan, Kyle! I am looking to release this topic as the second serial in my ‘Everyday Espionage’ series. Your feedback just solidified my plan!!