How healthy is your network?
It is said that each of us knows 250 people... You’re probably thinking, "yes, of course I do" or "no way, I don't even know 10!” Luckily for us, when it comes to networking, it doesn't really matter how many we know. What matters is how we manage the connections we do have. This needs to be a continual management in a strategic manner, in order to truly keep your network current and alive.
Tell me, when was the last time you sat down to take a strategic look at your current network to see if you need to work on it? For most people, it becomes important when they find themselves job hunting. Suddenly, we start picking up the phone or sending emails to people we have not connected with for a very long time, in the hope they might know of some suitable roles. This is far from ideal, but why?
A high performer, whether job hunting or not, continually manages their network. They keep connected with everyone in a variety of different ways and in different time-frames. The skilled networker is just as keen to help others grow their networks and put people in touch with each other, as they are to make new connections themselves. I find that there is little more rewarding than putting two people in touch, who find they are able to help each other achieve personal or work goals.
When you sit down to strategically review your network, do you have any gaps? What are they? Do you have people who challenge your thinking? Do you have people who inspire you? Do you have people in your network who you can contact when things get really tough and you need some advice? Do you have people in your network who have an equally good network when you are looking to hire people or get specific expert advice on a subject?
Are you answering positively to all those questions? Or is there something you can do to improve your network? If you’re not sure, contact me to find out more.
One last question for you: What sort of person are you in other peoples network? Because remember, networking is a two way street, and when you give value to others, you will receive just as much value and more...And what is networking if not sharing your value?
Take one small action to improve your network today.