Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Map your network of contacts.

Take some time to write down all those people that you know in the various activities and travels of your life. This includes professional and personal contacts. Record, at minimum, where they work, their title, and contact information. If possible, note relationships and associations of each that you are aware of. Also note if they have special knowledge or access to resources. For example, if your friend also welds and makes sculptures or fixes old cars, record this as well. One day you may be able to use this information to connect two people who will benefit from knowing one another- and you in the process.

The better you know each person the more ‘degrees’ you will be able to take that person's relationships out. If you can link up on LinkedIn (a system that tracks the degrees of separations in relationships), do so. Think through who you know at the gym, at church, the grocery store, your wine club or poker guys, golf buddies, etc. There are literally dozens, if not hundreds, of people that you know and the second and third degree relationships can number into the thousands. Capture them in a list and start to map out who you know, who knows whom and who knows what.

Once you have this list compiled, study it for the relationships that may lead to important introductions, the relationships that you want to learn more about and the resources your network has available for you to leverage. What you will find is a list of contacts that represent a rich environment for networking and connecting people together. This is the essence of rainmaking.

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