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The Importance of Networking

07 March 2011

Networking is the most basic business building tool and a life skill! We all know the saying \"it is not what you know, but who you know\" BUT do you know the saying \"it is not who you know, but who knows you?\" In today's environment your technical skills are a given; it's the relationships you develop that will set you apart and those relationships all have to start somewhere - networking.

Networking starts with a mindset - our Attitude. We need to have in front of mind the long term personal benefits of networking and there are many! We need to think how successful we really want to be. We need to step out of our comfort zones - \"If you always do what you have always done you will always get what you have always got\" (Anthony Robbins).

Networking is not selling - it is the first step in the relationship building process. Just as it is up to us to manage our careers and progress in the business environment, so, too, is it up to us to actively manage our networks, our circle of influence.

According to a Harvard Business Review, How Leaders Create and Use Networks by Herminia Ibarra and Mark Hunter, networking is creating a fabric of contacts across three types of networks namely operational, personal and strategic that will provide support, feedback, insight, resources and information.

87% of business is said to be done through referrals - this makes the \"who you know\" and \"who knows you\" critically important. It also means that you need to get out there and start networking. Do it now!