One of the finer arts of networking is introducing your contacts to each other, just because they are people they might each want to know. Clearly this is no good at all if there is no clear point of common interest in their professional or personal lives. You need to put some thought into the contact and do it only if there is come clear advantage to both parties. The best networkers understand that there is huge value in doing something for a colleague, associate, client or supplier – with no expectation of return. That old ‘What goes around, comes around’ adage.
Today I connected up two people on the other side of the world – just because I thought they would be useful contacts in the same industry.
– Karen was our wonderful contact on the Thomson Reuters 360 degree feedback project for about 6 years. She has recently moved back to Sydney and is embarking on an exciting new phase of her career studying psychology and doing some independent career coaching for her past employer.
– David is the Head of HR for a large computer hardware company – also based in Sydney.
Rather than connecting them directly on LinkedIn, I opted to mail them and ask if they would like to be introduced to each other – but I included their public LinkedIn profile links so that they could get a better look at each other’s backgrounds and experience before connecting up. They can then choose whether to meet up for a coffee, just stay in email contact, or extend that to include LinkedIn as well.
We tend to use online tools in the way that others do – I’ve started to think about other ways to use LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook to be more effective in different aspects of my life. And I’ve found a number of new ways of using all of them.
Photo credit: dsevilla