I once sat in a meeting where one of my colleagues stated that she had been in business for over 10 years as an entrepreneur and that networking for her meant that she was no longer “lonely” in business.
At the time I found this quite hard to understand as I am, by nature, a loner – not a lonely person you understand, but very definitely a loner. So the concept of someone being “lonely” is hard for me to grasp and someone being “lonely” in business, is something that is very foreign to me.
You see on a business level, I meet people and with people on a daily basis. There are of course the clients that I meet with when we discuss what needs to be done, how it will be done and in what priority it will be done, then, of course, are the prospective clients that I meet when I try and understand what their business is and whether they need my services or not and finally there are the people who I meet at Networking events and who I make appointments with to meet on a “one on one” in order to expand my “circle of influence” and my database, whilst adding value to them and they to me. So the question begs to be answered – how can you be lonely in business? I mean surely she would also be meeting clients and prospective clients and networking?
I have, over time, understood exactly what it is that she meant, not that I have experienced that feeling, but that is probably because I am a natural networker. It is being able to use other networkers in order to bounce your ideas off them. It is being able to sit in a room full of people who understand your frustration(s) because they too are entrepreneurs and they face the same challenges as what you do. It is about seeing the same kind of passion on the faces of people, that you know shines off your face – because they are as passionate about what they do as you are about what you do.
Again, the question begs to be asked – why wouldn’t you want to be in the company of a group of people like this?
I certainly want to be – but then again, that is probably why I am!