Living by Experience - Travel and Photography Lifestyle Magazine
Professional networking 2.0 – sharing what matters most even when nobody listens Professional networking 2.0 – sharing what matters most even when nobody listens
I remember going to a Christmas party once with a dear friend and colleague, and when we entered the restaurant where the party was... Professional networking 2.0 – sharing what matters most even when nobody listens

I remember going to a Christmas party once with a dear friend and colleague, and when we entered the restaurant where the party was she quietly mentioned she really wasn’t in the mood to speak to all those people tonight. Instead of “networking” we sat in a quiet corner, enjoyed the people watching, the food and a drink or two.

In building my career and businesses, I often didn’t feel like networking at all. That’s partially because I used to be a shy person who didn’t say much at all. The other part is because networking often felt meaningless to me. The conversation topics are picked from the shallow end of the pool, where people pretend to be all sorts of things they aren’t, as part of their involvement in corporate politics at some level. If you don’t play ball at the same management level, the conversation is merely based on the difference in employee status.

Having the problems with authority that I have, especially in corporate life, that kind of social interaction never worked well for me. I believe networking should be based on sharing ideas and having a meaningful conversation with your peers, your boss, clients, or the CEO. Networking is the time when status stays behind, and people come off their pedestals and out of their corporate ivory towers to connect as equals. Someone considered smoking to be the best possible networking event, since having a smoke outside by the loading dock is probably the only place where you can have a quick conversation with the CEO. I think that’s a pretty unhealthy habit, both physically speaking, as well as from an organizational health perspective. If the CEO is that far removed from the company how can he or she be in charge of it and make effective decisions?

Networking, within the company with management and peers alike, as well as with other companies or even competitors, should be based on being of service to one another. Listen to understand what your conversation partner has to say, instead of jumping in to respond too quickly. Instead of competing for business or your fifteen minutes of fame with the “boss”, see how you can help each other out.

Curious to read more? This post contain a short excerpt from my best-selling book The Freedom Project – Happiness – available through Amazon and finer book retailers worldwide.

Who do you know that could use a little more balance and happiness in their life? Get them a copy of my Happiness book, available now worldwide on Amazon. For those who live in Canada: the book is also available on Amazon Canada!

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Wilko van de Kamp Author

WILKO VAN DE KAMP is the author of #1 international best seller The Freedom Project and several other books and e-books. He's also an award-winning photographic artist, and professional world traveler. His inspiration comes from traveling all over the world. He calls the Canadian Rocky Mountains his home, and the rest of the world his office. He has been capturing our wonderful planet, and it's beautiful inhabitants, for more than half his life. Wilko has spent his life traveling the world to capture awe-inspiring images for those who wouldn't see them otherwise, and to inspire others to embark on their journey of a lifetime. Through his art, writing and appearances as a keynote speaker he enjoys sharing his colorful experiences with the world. Visit him online at www.wilko.ca