It's not what you know, it's who you know.
In today's business world, who you are connected to is more important than anything else. Young professionals fresh out of college or grad school have to build and strengthen their network in order to succeed.
I've interviewed several serial entrepreneurs, such as Wing Lam (Wahoo's Fish Taco), Mark Verge (Westside Rentals) and Jason Nazar (DocStoc). The one thing they all have in common is their deep networks. By deep I mean quality (strength) and quantity (size). Sure, it may have taken them a long time to build their connection base, but in the long run, it will ensure their impact over time.
Imagine if your personal network was so grand, you'd always have a job...
Imagine having a "go-to" person in different industries...
Imagine your goal is to make others around you successful...
This doesn't have to be a dream. It can be a reality. Start today with the people you know, then ask them to connect you with resources they know. Have your friends introduce you to their friends. It's as simple as that.
In Keith Ferrazzi's book, Never Eat Alone, he talks about creating a
"Relationship Action Plan." Here's a summary of his idea:
1) Develop Goals to Fulfill your Mission
Make sure there's a purpose to the goals you set. "A goal is a dream with a deadline."
2) Connect your Goals to People
Identify the people who can help you get there.
3) Strategize the Best Way to Reach People
Reach out to people who can make a difference in your life and the lives of others.
Building relationships should be more important to your goal, than the goal itself. Nowadays a business plan is useless because time moves too fast. Once you've established one, it becomes irrelevant. Make your goal to build relationships.
Why? Because your career depends on it.
Who has helped you advance in your career? How did they help you?