Coach2Growth Editorial Team | Coach2Growth
The case for maintaining and growing your network is compelling. The people in your network can help you find a job, develop your business, fill a position, get a second opinion, and bring a sense of well-being when needed most.
Our network includes colleagues, business partners, associations, board members, clients, customers, community volunteers and, yes, our family and friends.
Members of our networks bring their unique value in myriad ways, from subject matter expertise to problem solving assistance, to emotional support. And, some of us are even lucky enough to discover the rare gem of a mentor or a sponsor along the way.
Similarly, we provide unique value to others.
A strong network, however, is built with intention, takes time and requires:
- A service mindset – as in, it’s not just a one-way street
- Emotional intelligence – knowing yourself well allows you to position your value and tune into the needs of others
- Clearly defined goals – an understanding of what you want to accomplish
Our active network ebbs and flows based on our goals. So, understanding your goals helps you identify “holes” where you need to expand your reach to a broader, more diverse base of connections. Other times, you may be reminded to engage more actively with existing connections.
A goal of increasing recognition for your contribution is different than a goal of up leveling your executive presence and influence. So, who you call upon for what will vary. Ensuring that you have people in your network to support specific goals, then, is essential to moving the ball forward.
Not sure where to begin? This Network Assessment Tool can help you take stock of your current networking relationships, assess strengths and gaps, and develop and execute a plan to connect with those who can help you take a step closer to achieving your objectives.
Whether you’re taking the next step in your career, or looking to hop back into the workforce, cultivating your network to keep it healthy and thriving is essential to reaching your goals.