Nurture Your Network
What are you doing each day to nurture your network? Are you actively seeking ways to help others? Are you conscious of others’ needs as you go through your day? Do you listen and look for clues to situations or opportunities for others, or are you stuck on your own issues and needs?
Truly helping others means it is necessary to look beyond the surface. Having 3,000 Linked In contacts doesn’t lead a person to opportunity in and of itself, nor will it lead others to opportunity if the contacts are superficial. Certainly, having more contacts could lead to opportunities to develop new and productive relationships, but it requires work. Evaluate your motives. Are you truly interested in helping others or do you simply want to be visible?
Each day, time needs to be dedicated to thinking of others, reaching out, and nurturing those relationships. You might relate this to the old rule of quality vs. quantity. More isn’t better if you don’t know the people or aren’t nurturing your contacts. Being visible doesn’t equate to or take the place of having meaningful, productive relationships.
Ways to nurture:
- Be aware of what people really need or want. Ask them if you don’ t know.
- Send meaningful information to people that will actually resonate with them.
- Pay attention to the information available to you to get to know people better. (i.e., LinkedIn profiles, bios or info on other social networking sites.)
- Ask for advice on topics the individual would be knowledgeable in.
- Offer to connect people because you know something about them, not just because they asked to “be linked”.
- Do something thoughtful for someone you know without expecting reciprocation.
- Offer to help someone with something they are struggling with.
- Be respectful of other people’s time; be aware of their schedules or activities to ensure you are communicating in ways and at times that make sense.
How are you nurturing your network?