Building Your Network Life
You're probably already and hopefully, you're already thinking about, all right, who and what and those ideas and, this may be familiar to folks. Has anyone seem that wheel of life? My back row is going crazy. They know this one. You guys are like, "Oh God, we're never sitting "in the back row again, "it's so much safer in the front row." (laughs) So it's a coaching exercise. I've done it before through the School of Integrative Nutrition. They often use it in terms of their exercise and diet focus coaching methodology where our diets, sometimes in terms of trying to get a fitness or a weight goal to achieve that, it's really not what you're eating or your exercise it's because your relationship sucks, you hate your job; it's other things that lead to the dissatisfaction that might lead to, you know, you can't fix this problem if we don't understand the whole picture and I really like this model because we have these big goals in life and we're fixated on, I should have done maybe one ...
more segment in here, strangers. Go back to the beginning with networking that idea that strangers are gonna come riding in here and save us when really the pieces are here but we're so fixated on just one slice of our life, we're overlooking the possibility that the people in the network who can help us or the people in the network who we should be cultivating relationships with for a bigger purpose. So let me use an example; startups. Startups in this, in terms of what they need and their goal in terms of getting... I'm gonna say taking it from idea to, you know, launching and having users and maybe even getting some seed funding or any kind of funding, obviously need some help on the way. They need to get incorporated. Hopefully, they've gonna have maybe a friends-and-family round or some money and they'll even put it in a bank account and you know what, they probably haven't done business finances before so they should probably get an accountant. Who have they gotten those vendor roles? If you have the choice you know, everyone always wants to hire hire the best people so you know if you're the startup or someone thinking of a startup and saying, "Yeah, but my friend's cousin, sister went to law school "a few years ago she does family law "but she says she can incorporate." Bad answer, always the bad answer. You gotta find people who know their stuff but also thinking about what are their net relationships and connections. If you're banking with someone and you're a startup, damn, they should want you to be successful. The more money you're putting in your bank account is the more money that's helping them. So who is the banking relationship that can make introductions for you? Who is the accountant who might have other clients who says, "Oh gosh, you guys should maybe talk to each other?" So think about that. You've got things and like I said then I put in the just category. Oh, it's just my family. You wanna ask them. It's just my brother and then the other things where you're like, "Alright, I need to pick relationships to do things for me." Making a selection based on what's their generosity and helping other people, making a selection on the basis of the strength of their relationships and reputation, in my view is really smart business. Why wouldn't you want to do that? Why wouldn't you want to have more people getting in that boat to help you row in your direction, go back to Tom Brady in football. You're gonna hire that the accountant who's gonna sit on the sidelines going, "Woo! "Go in that game by yourself. "I'm glad you started that business, good luck! "I'm over here if you need me," rather than someone who says, "You know what, "I got some people who can get on the field here with you "and make this happen." Think about, as I said, first of all your mindset of just but also what else, who else, who else are they bringing to the table. I got a lot of nods. Are we getting any nods online, what do we got?
Lots of nods, lot's of agreeing.
I wanna hear some of their nods.
And also lots of just kind of I feel it like saying, "This is really helpful." So for example, Eric actually has gotten back in touch and he was waiting and willing.
There we go! Goal of the day, we didn't scare off Eric.
And Eric says, "Thank you so much. "It is easy to make assumptions "about how conversations might go. "These are awesome examples of why talking "to everyone is important, thank you so much." So definitely appreciating the advice there and just lots of people online, actually. I mean if you're happy to take some questions now--
This is a really good time to have questions and also too because we have, this is like sort of the luxury, we've got some time here so we have a whiteboard. I know everyone doesn't have the worksheet but we've got this up here on the screen. If there is someone who would like to talk about, all right, what is some of this that they're looking at so we can unpack some of these relationships, let's do that. So what do we got online? Erica says, "When networking, would it be more advised "to say what you're doing now, "like I'm a teacher but looking to get into web design "or be more direct and say, I am a web designer "because that's the direction you want to be heading in?" So at what point does that become like you're kind of lying or you know where... (laughs)
No, you're not lying. It's like what do you want to be found for. What is it that you wants the work you want people to send you. So I'd say like in Eric's situation, this is a really, really, really good one to start putting that forward. What I find a lot of people do, more often than not is they're cobbling together and they've got a career where they've got a bunch of pieces. There was a guy I met in a New York Public Library event that I did for the book and he came up to me and he was like, "Well, I'm a lawyer "and that's my profile on LinkedIn "but over on Instagram, I'm a photographer "and over here I'm," and I was like, "Dude, "like I am really confused. "What work am I sending you?" What work, Eric, do you want people to send you? That should be foremost. You could say, "I am moving my career towards photography. "I haven't given up my teaching job "but this is the kind of stuff I'm really looking for." And to be able to start crafting that story and that's a particularly good one to be crafting it with everyone because who knows you and says, "God he's been toiling away "as a teacher and he's really trying to get into this "and he's got some time to do these kinds of projects "and he's just worked on this." This close group of people really is the one to start, and I wanna say, giving you that that support but also feeding the future. What else we got there?
Kendall was asking, I love we had Eric and Erica. Not everyone's called Eric or Erica on our chat room but Kendall says, "How do you balance networking "for your career and all the other important things "in your life?" You know, without letting it take over or what's the right balance?
You go back to the formula. Why are you doing things? I would hopefully, by that idea of what's your goal? Who are the people who can help you now what you need to do with a notion like busting the notion of networking as just parties and events but networking being sending a better email. Networking saying, you know what, picking up the phone and talking to somebody. Networking being how you live that go back to like flip through all the slides, find the one that says networking is every single human interaction. So if you take those two things as new definition of what the tactic of networking is, you can start sifting out the notion that you gotta fill your your calendar with coffee dates and cocktail parties. I don't drink coffee. Contrary perhaps to popular opinion right now, I'm not an extrovert. I don't need to do any of those things. I want to do those things and take that time wisely. So first of all get rid of the notion the tactic is you gotta fill your calendar up with those things. If you go and use the methodology I'm talking about, what's your goal, you can all of a sudden say, "Right, "why am I making these choices?" Because your calendar is your priorities. Your decisions to do things, yes back rows are coming through. But your calendar is your priority so choose your calendar widely when you're taking time and where are the ways. So we've got a really, there's another worksheet coming up in our very last segment just sort of like on a daily basis. You actually have, if you've got my calendar, you got about 15 hours every day to make some human connection; either reinforce, establish, you know, engage with other people and how are you choosing to do that? So how do you balance all of this? Take a look at your calendar and your choices. This is what I would say to Kendall. Take a look at your calendar and your choices and again, go back to, I'm hearing instead of a remnant of the old model of networking which was cocktail parties and coffee dates, professional network over here, personal network over here. I'm like (clapping) go back to the first segment of this class, discard it, throw in the garbage. We don't need that model anymore. How are you living your life? What are your priorities? Just make some smarter choices. You don't know why you're doing something, time to change it. Back row, whoo-hoo!
She reminded me, thank you, to stand up. I just wanna say I'm finally hearing it and what you said really sits with me well because I'm also an introvert and so networking has always been additional tasks in my mind, but the way you're saying is for me is being present in every moment to that goal which I can do. That's workable in my mind so thank you for that.
You're welcome, you're welcome, you're welcome! Thank you and thank you for sharing that. I discovered in writing Build Your Dream Network because here's the deal, I picked case studies where I had seen people achieve an outcome and I said, "You know what, "I need you and to pack this for me." And I had sort of a suspicion and the way they had ended up where they had that they had followed this process as I will say it of how I network, something I never thought was unique or special until someone pointed it out to me and, when they said yes, they would share their stories, I said great and I sent everybody who I interview I sent them the questions. There's one question I didn't ask any of them and that was how'd you do on Myers-Briggs? I never asked any of, don't even ask me what mine was because I can't even tell you. I didn't ask them their personality type and until I got their answers back, I had no clue that what I had basically done, all right, so I given you a book that has nothing to do with working a room. I have written a book that really is about getting stuff done and I've given you a book filled with case studies, the majority of which feature and highlight the behaviors of introverts. And in writing this I said, "Oh gosh, what am I?" So there's a third category; there's introverts, there's extroverts, there's ambiverts. And I think more of us are ambiverts and ambiverts get their energy from other people. Think about a time when you've walked into a physical space, you've RSVP'd for an event, you've walked into a physical space and you've gone, "Oh God, "I'm so glad I have my phone because my face "is going to be in it for the next three hours "because I don't want to talk to anybody here." Think about when you've walked into that same physical space and you've gone, "My God, this is amazing, "I've had the best time." That's ambiverts and I think more of us fill that category. But for introverts, you know, I always say someone said, "What's the best networking advice "you can give for an introvert?" I said, "You know what, when anyone sends "you one of those articles, they think they're being helpful "and they send you an article, let's say, "Seven Ways an Introvert Can Network Like an Extrovert, "when someone sends you those emails, "I want you to say thank you and hit delete. Don't read it, don't change, don't do any of those things." Joe Siler is a terrific, an amazing an example of that because he is an introvert. Like Maxie, he knew what he wanted to achieve. He also knew there was a big hurdle to get where he wanted to go once he had identified that he wanted to be a manager in the after markets department. He needed to build relationships. He also knew he needed to understand the industry and he needed to make contacts and have a reputation and presence in the aftermarket industry. Where does the aftermarkets industry hold a conference every year? Vegas. My introverts howling with laughter. That's the definition of hell for an introvert. I didn't put this in the book, remember Joe, we were on the phone and we were talking and by the way I met Joe when I was writing my book because I was trying to buy a domain in the after market and in that phone call conversation I said, "I need your story, tell me about your story." Because he's like, "Oh, I'm interested in your book. "What's it about?" And I told him and he said, "Oh, this is my story," and I'm like, "I need your story." But Joe was telling me when the first time he went to this conference in Vegas, he was glad that there was no one on the elevator with him because he was like sweating back of the elevator like oh my god, oh my god, oh my god but he knew why he had to step into that, you know, casino-like chaos of that industry conference because he needed to understand the conference and the people there. Did it make it any less... And it's not like he lept off the elevator, whoopee, I'm here with people in after markets. No, he was like, "I know why I need to be here. "I can manage this anxiety. "I can deal with this nausea "of having to do this because guess what? "I can see the light at the end of the tunnel "of where I want to go to." And I think that's the difference. Understand why you're giving up your time. Understand why you have to exert that effort. You know, if your calendar is filled with things that you know you're spending a lot of time, maybe it is around self-development or rest and relaxation and family, well gosh that's, and you think you know I don't have time for business networking it's like why not? Why aren't you telling these people? Why aren't you sharing with them? But if you look, in doing this exercise, if you looked at this and realized in every single category of your life you're looking at the same darn faces, I'd sort of say to you, "Okay, "remember the narrow deep network and the broad shallow one, "this thing is unlikely to happen. "Yeah, big goal unless you start mixing it up." And maybe you do this exercise and you say to yourself, "Gosh, the people are really gonna help me." I don't recommend you know having business talks in the middle of meditation or yoga so let's be realistic but maybe you're like, "Oh right, you know what, "I was gonna take some self-development courses." Think of like Maxie with taking, at the Writers' Grotto, I need to really talk to people about what I'm doing. Valerie Cruz, one of the other case studies in the book, she purposely started cultivating this network to build her new entrepreneurial career away from being tax attorney in a big four. So you may need to cultivate a new network but you may just say, "You know what, "the network I need to get me where I'm going, "I've already got, "I just haven't been talking to them about it." And you need to shift up that conversation. What else we got going on?
Well in terms of questions, I think, there's this lots of praise and conversation going on so and we could definitely share all the praise. (both laugh)
The self-deprecating Canadian, I still got that humor even after 20 years of New York. Don't give me that. Don't get me go New Yorker, no! Give me the questions, give me the questions.
Perfect; well, what we'll do; is there any more in the audience, in-house?
Oh, front row! Perfect, perfect.
I guess to follow up on Eric's question about the personal and professional, I get invited for a lot of like coffee dates to pick my brain but a lot of times, that picking of the brain is stuff that I get paid to do with all my clients. So how do you distinguish between, you know, getting valued for something that you do for work versus like catching up with a friend, who wants to learn more about what you're doing, I don't know?
And I'm also laughing because my friend, Adrienne Graham, she's @talentdiva on Twitter. Adrienne and I met back when I was president of 85 Broads and we've stayed friends. She wrote a blog post that led to a self-published book called You Can't Pick My Brain For Free Because it Costs Too Much. There's an element of this valuing, someone valuing your time and valuing what you have to offer. I don't think there's anything wrong with because I think a lot of the time it is with women, we have a challenge with asking friends for business and the whole: it's a close friend, I don't know if I can ask them for work. In this type of situation, I would want to say to someone who's like, hey, when you can read between the lines or if they're being very clear, that really, why they want to have that coffee and catch up is they want to ask you work questions. So you know what I would love to meet you just to catch up on personal stuff, if you want to talk work stuff, here's how I do that. If you're looking just for free information from me on how I do what I do, that's why I have my blog, that's why I have my newsletter, that's why I'm speaking you know next week at this event; come and attend that but this is what I do as a business and even though you are a really good friend, I have to draw the line in terms of when I do it. So I do that all the time with people. It's like to be able to say, "Hey, I love the question you're asking. "It's something that my clients work with me on. "Here's where I give the information away for free." All right, so here's where I give the information away for free, I've got a weekly newsletter. I've got a list of my upcoming speaking, sitting there on my website and some of that is free. Here's these videos that you can find online. Here's the Forbes column, here's the stuff I've written for Inc., if you want free, take it. I'm always happy to take that initial question though and this may be something to think about when they say, for you to say, "Well, listen, you say you want to talk "to me about this with work, "I can point you to a whole bunch of resources "that's going to answer that question for you, "if this is the question you're asking me." And maybe ask that, say it's like me like turning the screw a little tighter. What's the real question they're asking? It may be something you haven't thought of. It could be something intriguingly new that may make it worthwhile to approach differently but if it's the stuff, I want to say that falls in the category that you're asked all the time, that falls in the category of; I'm asked all the time and when I'm asked it I'm paid for or it falls in the category of; this is where I've already given this information away for free, no and here's where your answer is found. We don't need to grab coffee on this one. Here's the blog post that will give you your answer. I'll see you next weekend at so-and-so's place like and often enough too, it's something, it's taken me a while, female, Virgo, Canadian, I don't know which level of the onion of complexity you want to put on, you don't want to disappoint people and sometimes I will get hit with a hey, can I pick your brain over coffee requests and I'm just like turn into something kind of Linda Blair Exorcist kind of angry and then I realize people just want an answer and they may be really happy if you say, "Oh, I wrote a blog post on that about a year ago, "here's the link." They might be like, "Oh fantastic, thanks." So sometimes, they've asked one way but really it's the source of the information but if it's something you get paid for, you know, let's say this for everyone because we've got CreativeLive, we got a lot of creatives who and you know hey, you can take a picture, come and do my pictures for free, no, no, no, no, no, if it's something it's your craft, it's what you get paid for, no but maybe this is part of how you network by sharing information, giving stuff away. You can focus your networking and your activities on the stuff you should be paid for and you should be found for and that sharing, not only sharing what you want to be found for but sharing content and pointing things out and letting people know what your expertise is, is really an act of networking generosity.