Networking to Expand Your Circle of Influence

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FountainBlue’s January 22 Front Line Managers’ Online meeting was on the topic of ‘Networking to Expand Your Circle of Influence’. My thanks also to our panelists for their participation. 

  • Roxanne Dos Santos, Samsung
  • Linda Christensen
  • Shruti Gautam, PayPal
  • With input from Susan Norton, BOLD and Preethy Padmanabhan, Freshworks

Below are notes from the conversation.

Humans are social beings, and networking helps humans to better connect with a broader range of other people. Below are some best practices shared by our speakers on the topic.

  • Align with others in the network (team/project/group) on a purpose and a vision. Know the ‘why’ before you think about the ‘what you’ve doing’ and the ‘how it will get done’. Measure to see if you’re successful in getting it done and iterate. WHY => WHAT => HOW => MEASURE
  • Take a customers-first mindset and deliver to the needs of the customer. Be curious about what they want and need, what they think about your product or service. Build relationships, networks and ecosystems of customers to help you better inform them, and deliver value to them.
    • Seek the feedback, integrate the feedback, inform them of how the feedback is help you shift the policy, strategy, offering, support, etc.,
    • Speak in a language of platform which would work for the customers, whether they are internal staff or partners or customers. 
  • Take a Culture-First approach to networking, building on the values of the executives, ensuring that people at all levels feel that they are important, are treated as if they matter.
    • Engage and connect with people throughout the organization and drive toward common goals. Help make them feel connected to each other even when we can’t meet in person. This may involve gamifying activities, making the time to have fun and connect at a more social level, rather than just being Zoom-Zombies.

The bottom line is that Networking is about making deep ongoing connections with a wide range of others so that you can better learn and grow yourself, and support others in doing the same. Together, we are all better.

Linda’s Top Ten Truths About Networking

1. Be other centric.

2. Networking is not transactional.

3. Be courageous.

4. Be authentic and empathetic.

5. Be genuine, without an agenda.

6. Be helpful.

7. The more the merrier.

8. No ulterior motive.

9. Make a mark, be memorable. Remember the other person.

10. Leverage technology.

Resources


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