Most of us have heard, “Working hard is not enough. You have to network and build relationships”. Sure, we hear this but if we are natural introverts, we generally do not take this advice to heart. So, we focus on becoming high performers, figuring our productivity would increase our equity.
Dan Rockwell wrote a brilliant post recounting the experience of Chris Hebrera , a Senior VP, who was not only passed over for the CEO role but fired due to a lack of relationships and therefore; visibility within his previous organization. He was a top-performer, committed and highly experienced but he did not build the social equity needed to reach that CEO position.
Then there’s the case of Sallie Krawcheck who after being ousted from Bank of America reflected, “I was never part of the meetings-before-the-meeting, or the meetings-after-the-meeting, or the “real” meeting; I was just part of the official meeting (which in some companies can be the least important meeting of them all).” As she says, one knows when you are not part of the inner-circle. The question is what action are you willing to take in order to gain entry?
Here are Dan Rockwell’s seven creative ways to build company-wide relationships:
- Invite leaders from other departments to your meetings.
- Ask for advice and suggestions from those over and under. Make others feel important.
- Ask for help. Those who help you feel connected to you. But, avoid being weak and needy. Ask for “easy help,” something easy for them and useful to you.
- Give more than you take.
- Volunteer for cross-functional assignments.
- Express gratitude, lots of it. Send thank-you notes.
- Think of people as people, not resources.
- The Secrets of Networking for Introvert Entrepreneurs (Forbes)
- The Amazing Life of the Queen of Wallstreet: Sallie Krawcheck (Business Insider)
- What I Learned when I Got Ousted from Bank of America (Quartz)
- 3 Quick Tips for An Introvert at Networking Events (Undergrad Success)
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Categories: Professional Development