Networking = Do Unto Others...
One of my favorite films about the sales profession, if there is such a thing as making a science out of the art or technique of selling, is Glengarry Glen Ross. Segue Alert! Selling is like any other complicated endeavor such as golf or gardening or cooking, the good ones have much in common even though there are innumerable ways to pursue the craft or to be successful in the pursuit. And selling is different than finance or operations or other necessarily process-driven professions. More of this in a future post.
The film Glengarry Glen Ross is based upon the play of the same name by David Mamet. In a rough and classic scene, Alec Baldwin briefs, threatens, intimidates a boiler-room of real estate salesmen. I'm not advocating for either his style or his principles. He refers to the ABCs of selling = Always Be Closing. I prefer a more sophisticated relationship between buyer and seller, less of the overtone of winner takes all. And he is correct. Always Be Networking.
I connect his ABC of selling with the notion that productive networking is not a sometime endeavor but a consistent endeavor. To ease the sting of the crass implication of networking, as though its only purpose is to benefit the receiver, I prefer to think of the process as a means for meeting like-minded individuals, whether professionally or personally affiliated, and learning what one might be able to do to help them. In short, the best way to receive help is to make one's self available to help another.
In Career Transition, meeting people is important as we need their feedback, insight and referrals. Networking is not easy and such a continuous effort is necessary. Once that you gain momentum, don't let it get away from you. You'll have several jobs in your career. Be known, be available, be sincere so that when your turn comes to ask for business insight, leads on prospective clients or help with a phase of your own career transition, there is plenty in the bank of related, sincere good-will to draw-on. //cp