That is the title of the training I did today, when it was my turn to facilitate our morning meeting. It seemed to go over well – I saw notes being taken and attention being paid – so I’ll count that as a win.
Basically, we discussed the meaning of networking, some basic concepts, and some basic skills. Networking is a gig I have a great deal of fondness for, being a natural shmoozer. I love to meet new people and get them talking. It’s like opening a treasure box – you never know what you’ll find inside. True, it could be Al Capone’s vault. But then again, it could be King Tut’s tomb.
A couple of points I made were key for this new generation of up and coming business moguls:
One is that if you’re around people, you’re probably networking whether you know it or not. Heck, standing in line for some recovery meds yesterday, I ended up networking with another patient and walked away with a potential business partnership. At the Health Department, of all places, and looking like a plate of death warmed over.
The other point I made was that the Internet is forever, and most businesses these days will do at least a basic Google search and MySpace trawl to see what you’ve got up on the web under your name. And some companies and orgs will do full-out background checks involving the Internet Archive (which keeps copies of even the stuff you took down years ago and thought was no longer on the web). Our program director shared how several Americorps applicants had been passed over during the application review stage based on what was on their MySpace pages.
Aside from that, it was basic network building strategies, basic skills and a bit of infrastructure info on how to create systems that help you build and maintain your networks. And it went pretty well, considering I was still a bit shaky and had (still have, actually) a crushing migraine on top of it.
Useful stuff, networking.
I just hope my colleagues use their powers for good.