Do you have some good connections? How long have they lasted? Building smart connections ensures better quality and creates lasting relationships.
What are connections for, are they for leaning on when you need them? Are they built for you to help them, or them to help you? Is help part of the equation?
Are connections about back scratching? I’ll scratch yours and then you scratch mine? Is it the good olde boy network?
Today, it often feels like you need a degree in psychology to sell many products or services. You have to understand the marketplace, the people, and use all of the resources at your disposal. It’s not true in every sector, but it is true in many.
It may also be true in social media. Social connections, people you’ve never met. Social proof, do your pictures tell a story and spring others to action? Are you active on social media?
What about that new job you’re thinking about? Does anyone there know you, who would be a good reference or could give you a gleaming recommendation?
Not all connections are the same. Many, but not all, seek reciprocity.
That isn’t all bad, but is it the true basis of connection?
Many non-profits go on funding drives. They make the ask. They apply a little pressure and you’re forced to consider your options.
Chambers of commerce host events. Drop a business card, shake (or fist-bump) a hand, or refer someone you know. Some of these have even ventured into an online, virtual option. Join us, we’ll chat, and become friends. Now, you’re on the email list.
LinkedIn, is designed mostly for business. People join, create a profile of experiences and credentials, make some connections, and establish a network.
Are any of these activities good? Are they smart?
Yes, and yes. They can also be over-cooked.
The elephant in the room is generosity. The more generous you are the better.
The tables haven’t turned, but people don’t value the feeling of being used.
Strive to be more generous.
Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.