Networking = A Lifestyle, Not Just A Job-Hunting Activity!
Networking is in everyone’s conversation these days, but it’s been around for centuries. Networking’s essence is that one builds relationships with people with whom one has some ‘affinity’. Graduates of the same high school are an affinity group. People who work in the same career field are an affinity group. Those who share an interest in radio-controlled models are an affinity group.
Finding an organization, or founding one, is an activity many people do in North America and around the world. Alexis de Tocqueville said in Democracy in America (writing in 1831!), “Americans of all ages, all conditions, all minds constantly unite. Not only do they have commercial and industrial associations in which all take part, but they also have a thousand other kinds: religious, moral, grave, futile, very general and very particular, immense and very small; … if it is a question of bringing to light a truth or developing a sentiment with the support of a great example, they associate”,…and they do so today: To help find work, stay employable, and thus become active and valuable contributors to their communities and ‘affinity’ groups.
Nick Corcodilos writes that “True networking is when you spend time with people who do the work you want to do, talking shop. Good networking involves working with other active professionals, … rubbing elbows and enjoying talk and activities related to the work you want to do. People think we network to get our next job. That’s absolutely wrong. We network to get smarter, to make new friends, to build our value and our credibility in our professional community, to help others, and to enjoy our work outside of the job. Job opportunities arise out of networking; they are not the reason to do it.” (Ask The Headhunter newsletter: “Too late to network?” March 18, 2008.)
While you are free to work through these articles in any order, they are arranged in a recommended sequence. You may also find this YouTube posted one-hour seminar I did in 2009 on networking helpful to watch as you work through and use the print resources here: