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Networking 101 – It’s A Collaborative Effort

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Napoleon Hill said that “No two minds ever come together without, thereby, creating a third invisible, intangible force”, whilst Andrew Carnegie’s secret of success revealed “Economic advantages may be created by any one person who surrounds himself with the advice, counsel and personal cooperation of a group of men who are willing to lend him wholehearted aid in a spirit of perfect harmony.”

Now why would any of us even begin to doubt or even question the words of these two great and successful men? Not me hey, if I can learn from others instead of having to learn the lesson myself, usually in the most painful way, well then I am a happy camper!

On top of that, what they are saying makes perfectly logical sense to me as well. It is my personal experience, in a Networking environment (particularly the ones that I go to), that like minded people are more than willing to assist, to connect you to their data bases, to recommend you to other like minded people – it’s a collaborative effort.

My colleague and friend Colleen Larson of BE (Business Engage, ) always tells folk “that even as a group, we (BE) know that we cannot do everything and indeed we wouldn’t want to as we want to create the opportunities for our members”.

For me it’s almost like ‘playing it forward’. It’s like Oprah Winfrey says in her “What I Know for Sure” when she says that her friend and mentor Dr Maya Angelou always says “When you learn, you teach. When you get, you give.” It’s about helping those navigate their way through the mine field that you have just walked through. It’s about mentoring whilst you yourself are being mentored. It’s about empowering people and SMME’s whilst I, myself am being empowered.

It’s about surrounding myself with people who make things happen, rather than people who are constantly wondering what the hell happened!

So pick your Networking events with care. Make them work for you and don’t forget to work them too.