Friday, January 12, 2007

Networking Is Dead....Long Live Networking

Listen. Do you hear them? Do you hear all the people who are saying: "I hate networking", "Networking is a waste of time", "Those who network are cro-magnum men and they offend me to the point that I just want to scream, because I am a more enlightened person than those awful networkers", "This is a new era and networking has no place here",...."Networking is dead, it does not work".

Do you hear them? Oh yes, my friends, they are out there.

Well guess what...they are full of shit and I am tired of their pansy ass whining.

You know what, if networking is dead...then LONG LIVE NETWORKING, cuz it isn't dead at all.

It can't be dead, because as long as human beings walk on this beautiful earth, we will need one another to succeed. Always have, always will. Nobody lives in a vacuum, we are an interdependent species. To think that anyone achieves their goals without the support of others is just wrong.

People like to do business with people they know. They feel comfortable engaging in commerce with those whom they trust. Being a known entity will mean more opportunities will appear in your life. Making an effort to make real connections with other people will bring you not only more business, but will bring you joy. But it cannot happen without effort. You must work to build your network.

All those who run around proclaiming the demise of networking are just misguided. They want to re-label networking into something else. But a rose by any other name would still smell as sweet. It is still "networking". Making connections and building mutually beneficial relationships IS the name of the game.

Sure, when you go out into the world you will encounter people whose networking style is horrible. There are self centered and obnoxious people on this planet. But do not let them spoil your experiences when it comes to your efforts to make, grow and keep your business relationships.

My belief about networking is that it is not about simply going out and seeing a person and gaining their business card. It is not discovering them in Linked In and inviting them to join your "network". No-sir-E-Bob. Networking is about uncovering the individual beliefs, passions, goals, dreams, and plans of other people. It is about developing a friendship and mutual admiration. And is is most definitely in helping others to achieve their aspirations. Those who give to others get in return. It happens. Those who are takers get a nothin' sandwich.

I was at a networking function the other day and one of the attendees was negative about everything that came up in conversation. I bet he could find a reason to complain about a sunny day in San Diego. He did not like the new iPhone, he did not like Rosie O'Donnell or Donald Trump (well, maybe he has a point there), he did not like David Beckham (or Posh Spice), and he did not like networking. No matter what the topic, he found reason to trash all sides of the issue. In the end, I did not like him. There was nothing pleasant in the conversation. Nothing. He proclaimed that nobody he met networking ever helped him. Well of course not, he is a jerk. He obviously had never helped anyone else either. But it is awful people like this guy who run around claiming that networking is a failure.

I see the world of networking differently. It is not about injecting negative comments into the conversation, it is about finding the positives and getting others excited to tell you about what is on their mind. Engage people with questions about their business, their personal life, their dreams and goals. You will love to listen to others when they begin to sing with passion. Then find ways to help them. If you do this, then abundance will return to you in ways you have never imagined. That is networking! And that can never die.

Have A Great Day.


1 comment:

Alex said...

Couldn't agree more! Here in Shanghai we don't get so many naysayers, but we do get a lot of people who think it's all about getting as many cards as possible rather than building up real relationships.

I've added a link to your post on our 'Links of the Day' section at Shanghai Networking News in the hope that people take notice :-)