The Two Precarious Sides to Effective Networking


Improve your networking position by serving both effectively. A few months ago (over 7 business days) I had 42 meetings with over 50 people. This is part of a startup community-building project I am doing with Techstars. One of the main thrusts of this project is to encourage startup community participants to spend more time connecting with others in the community. We are all aware of the necessity to network but most view it more as a chore than an opportunity. What a shame for those of you who hold that belief. Networking - can we find a better word that has less negative connotations - enables personal power. The fundamental fear or distaste for networking is that some approach the connection as a transaction as opposed to a relationship. The transaction tactic has obvious shallow intent falling on just one person. The relationship approach is more naturally intent to create win/win outcomes for both parties. Which gets me to the issue of the two sides of effective networking. Implied in the connection is an ask and an answer. For effective networking, you must be able to serve either or both of the ask and the answer. The ask can come in many favors

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