You never know when you will meet great people, so be ready. If you are a seasoned networker, you are always prepared to make connections.
I was on a flight to California yesterday and sat with some great folks from a San Diego company. The CEO, Bill, was one of the most engaging people I have ever had the pleasure of talking with. He was a very successful businessman and had constructed a phenominal business, but was also a very nice, well-rounded person, who had many great stories to share.
I learned a lot from him in just a couple of hours of conversation. If you are aware of those around you, mini-mentors will appear and pass along their wisdom. This can have a material impact on your life if you are open to the lessons others can provide.
On the next leg of my travels I sat next to Andy, an aggressive young professional with a very bright career path and personal future. You can tell when you meet someone still youthful, but genuinely has success coded into their DNA. He has big plans and I predict he is one day just like the CEO from the first flight! In addition to his managing a sales team for a cool and growing company, his family is also in the wine business (how cool is that!).
Both of these gentlemen had an impact on me. I was inspired by how they view the world and their enthusiasm was contagious. I hope to follow up with each of them, as they are the type of people that you want to have in your network of professional contacts. They are the type of people you would want as your friends!
I encourage you to always be ready to meet the people around you, whether you are on a plane, in line at Starbucks, waiting in the doctors office, etc....
Obviously you will not always find people who want to chat with you...but when you do, you just might discover gold. Everyone has something from which you can learn.
Have A Great Day.