Everyone is told they need to network. We all know the benefits; or at least we know them intellectually. Yet it still takes time and effort to get out there and do what you need to do. And, of course, we do not have very much time to spare. Getting a little more focus helps to make it easier to do.
Instead of thinking of networking as a cost (time, energy and cash),think about it in terms of an investment. Convert the time and energy into a monetary equivalent. Now…
- What are your investment objectives? What significant goals in your life do you think could be aided by new people? Therefore, what do you want to get out of your networking?
- Linked to the above, what is your investment strategy going to be? Short, medium or long term? Gordon Gekko asset stripping or Warren Buffet in it for the long haul?
- Are you going to spread your investment? Rather than put all your eggs in one basket, using a variety of different channels spreads risk but also dilutes your time. What is the right balance for you based on what you want to achieve?
I could go on, but I am sure you can take it from here. Using the investment metaphor is just one way of filling your networking with new ideas and action. And, if you are not too keen on investing, how about gardening?