Saturday, January 28, 2012

Build Your Network Before You Need It

Build Your Network Before You Need It
by Jeffrey Macapinlac
As I consciously work on fine-tuning mynetworking skills (via Chamber meetings, seminars, workshops, conferences, random encounters etc.) I have reflected upon my personal network with an attitude of gratitude.

Without fail, whenever I have needed assistance with life changing activities, such as getting a job, traveling to parts of the world I'm unfamiliar with, or exploring new ideas; I can always think of specific people that I can contact to help me along.
Why have I been so lucky? What's my secret in building a strong network I can rely on?

I have come to the conclusion that in order to compliment any of your future endeavors, you must build your own supportive network before you need it.

It's simple. Whenever I am getting to know new people, I am always thinking in the back of my mind: "how can I serve them? How can I help them reach their goals?"

Consciously, I set aside any thoughts about what others can do for me and primarily focus on how I may benefit them. Any expectations or thoughts of how I may benefit come in at a distant second.

I have not yet pinpointed the specific universal laws that come into play, but it always works out that I receive exactly what I need from my network at the right time. I don't worry about instant
gratification; my focus is on the long term.

This works with your entrepreneurial and corporate endeavors.

While working in the corporate biotechnology industry, I can confidently say that my team player skills were unmatched, not because of my experience (I was surrounded by others that worked in the industry significantly longer), but because of my extreme willingness to help others reach their goals, regardless of whether or not they worked on my team. In return, I had the ability to tap into my network, and access knowledge and experience from every department at my company.
Many times, I don't even have to ask others to help me along. I've found that when others find out that I am struggling with something that they've already conquered, they are willing to go out of their way to push me along. That is definitely something to be grateful for.

As Keith Ferrazzi points out in his book, Never Eat Alone:
"You must reach out to others long before you need anything at all. The idea isn’t to find oneself another environment tomorrow - be it a new job or a new economy - but to be constantly creating the environment and community you want for yourself, no matter what may occur."
I encourage you to build your network now before you need it. The benefit is that when you need a little help later down the line, it will be ready, willing and available for you!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Don't just comment -- send in your news releases to Mitch Davis the Editor at

Include "[News]" with the brackets in your subject for instant publishing.