Become the Google of Networking
Guest post by Brian Rashid, J.D., Motivational Speaker and Coach
I love people. I do not love networking events. If robots watched how people network in our current world, they would probably have one thought. The humans should just leave this to us. This could be a good idea – a networking event full of robots. Here are the questions they would have to ask.
What is your name?
What do you do?
Why are you here tonight?
Do you have a card?
Done. This is how we network, so why not let robots do it for us. We’d rather be watching House of Cards anyway. This way, the robot then gets into a car driven by his fellow robot friend and they drive to your house. They hand you the cards they collected. You throw them away because that is what you would have done even if you were at the event in person. You thank the robot for the cards. You then go back to binge watching your fourth consecutive hour of House of Cards. Life is good.
Or is it?
I have good news for those of you who resonate with the frustrations, boredom and unoriginality of the networking world described above. There is a way to become a master networker. However big or small your network is today, you can build an empire. You can become Google. You want to be Google. Everyone wants to be Google. I am going to show you how. It is easy.
First, you have to understand Google. Google has no content. None. Just a little magic box where you enter what you are looking for. Then Google says, “you want to learn how to swim, here are a few of our best sites that teach that.” You say, “Thanks, Google,” and then you leave the site. The average person spends only a few minutes a month on Google. Google is fine with that. They do not want you on their site for much more than that. They want you to leave. They already got what they want from you. They either updated their algorithm (by seeing what you clicked on), or they made money (because you clicked on a site that paid them, aka advertising). So Google is happy to see you come and go in one minute. But here is what Google knows. The next time you need something, you will be back. You always come back. Google knows you will always come back.
What does this have to do with networking? A lot. You want to be Google. You want to meet as many people as you can. But here is the catch. You are not interested in what they can do for you! You are interested in how you can connect them with other people you met. You are interested in how those two people can help each other. This is how you grow an empire. Your network is no longer linear. Your network is now exponential. Here is the main difference between the two.
A linear network is like having a job that pays you per hour. Unless you are physically present and working, you don’t get paid. If you are building a linear network, you have to meet each person. You have coffee. You have dinner. You have drinks. Your value and resources increase every time you meet someone new. The list of people you know becomes bigger. But that is not an empire. That is a list. A list is not good enough anymore. A list is what most people create. You don’t want to be most people. You want to be Google.
Instead, an exponential network is like having residual income that you have on autopilot. It pays you even when you are on a beach with no internet or phone in the Dominican Republic. Or when you are in your pajamas and sleeping until 2 pm on a Wednesday. Here is how it works. You meet John today at an event. You meet Sally tomorrow. You know John and Sally could help each other. You introduce them and then get out of the way. Tell them to take you off the “cc.” Let John and Sally build together. Let them become friends. Let them make money. Let them make lots of money. You don’t need to be in the middle of this benefit. It will come back to you. Even if it takes years, it will come back to you. Even if you lose one opportunity now, you will gain ten opportunities later. The universe has unlimited resources. You do not. Your time is limited. Your resources are limited. Your network is limited. Be more like the universe. Open up and expand. Connect two people today. Connect another two people tomorrow. Take yourself out of the middle. Don’t worry about how you will benefit right now. I promise you will eventually. The more your network succeeds, the more you will too. It grows even when you are not there. It grows even if you don’t know it. You are creating opportunities for people all over the world. Then you become the person people come to for connections. You become the person people come to for opportunity. You become the person people come to for knowledge. You become Google. Even if they only stay for a few minutes. They will always come back.
They will always come back to you.
Brian Rashid is a TED speaker, public speaking coach, and high-performance trainer. He works with Executives from companies like Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, Jawbone, Salesforce and others to help them with communications coaching, branding, and innovation. He speaks at companies, organizations, and universities across the country on the topics of entrepreneurship, lifestyle design and how to make money in the new economy doing what you love.
You can learn more about Brian by viewing his website, www.brianrashid.com.
Please note: America’s Future Workforce receives an annual grant from Google.