Since reading and reviewing Jeffrey Meshel’s One Phone Call Away, I decided to reread Harvey Mackay’s Dig Your Well Before You’re Thirsty. Both books are excellent resources for anyone looking to build their network. I hope to do a full review of Harvey Mackay’s book, but for now will concentrate on something I read in Chapter 14: R.I.S.K. IT. – The Four Elements of Networking.
As you can probably guess, R.I.S.K. is an acronym, which stands for:
Keeping at it
Now let’s look at each of the elements:
Although you should never come right out and ask, “what’s in it for me,” reciprocity is what makes a network work. If each member of the network were to focus on how they could help the other members, the network will be a success. Of course there will always be those who take but never give. Those cases usually end up with the “user” getting pushed out of the network.
Think about all the different careers out there. Now imagine having to perform them all yourself! You couldn’t do it. That’s what makes a network interdependent. If you have a plumber in your network, you know who to call when the toilet overflows (or when you need to replace the ballcock). Or, say you need to draw up a will. If you have a trusted lawyer within your network, you don’t have to try to find one via the Yellow Pages.
Information sharing has to be easy to come by if the network is to operate properly. Thankfully, with email, blogging, and websites like MySpace, sharing is now easier than ever before.
Keeping at it
You have to maintain your network. You do that by keeping up with the people in your network. Calling them on their birthday or sending them a card every now and then, will help you keep your network up-to-date.
These are all pretty straight-forward elements of a network. Sometimes the simple stuff isn’t that clear. Hopefully this post will help you to start thinking about your own network. Let me know if you have any other networking tips you would like to share.