Those four words, strung together, can be very powerful, can’t they?
Last week, I spent several network-building days in Kansas City. Why? Primarily, because a couple of people I was connected to said, “Hmmm….I think you ought to meet so-and-so.”
Last year, I went to California with my family for a wedding. We decided to spend a few days in Half Moon Bay, and lo and behold, one of my contacts, Andrew Nemiccolo, had recently moved there. So we met for coffee at a local shop, and after getting deeper into each others’ business approaches, he said I needed to get connected to Alana Muller in Kansas City. So (of course – this was Andrew after all!), I reached out and we began to interact.
Also in 2012, long-time on-line acquaintance Shelly Kramer told me that, because of some similarities in business approaches, I really should get to know George Weyrauch, a fellow KC’er whom she had met. George and I began to talk, and developed a pretty deep collaboration over time.
In fact, there was so much potential that I decided to make a trip to KC, which would also include the opportunity to meet with other social influencers in my network, including Wendy Blackburn, Zena Weist, and (finally!) Shelly.
What a delightful trip it was, full of meeting new people and – this is important if you know me – enjoying some of that great Kansas City BBQ! Since I’d never really had a chance to tour the city, I spent some time wandering about KC’s funky and cool Plaza section, which was a gold mine for picture-taking.
The time spend with Alana Muller (who heads up the Kauffman Foundation FastTrac program for entrepreneurs) was amazing – we could have talked for hours. I’d like to introduce her excellent book to you, called Coffee Lunch Coffee (Amazon affiliate direct link).
This entire trip was simply an illustration of what the book teaches. Suffice it to say that if I were to write a book on how to build a network….well, I no longer have to. Alana’s is pretty much the one I would have written. Highly recommended!
So, here’s the point – cultivate your network. Talk to people, especially over coffee (or over Skype, or lunch, or…however) – don’t just leave it at retweets and Facebook comments. When you connect with smart, pay-it-forward people, you never know what might develop over time.
That’s opportunity networking.
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