Keith Ferrazzi has provided us a unique insight into how networking works in the world with his book “never eat alone.”
Networking is a scary for many people. Visions of handing out business cards on the street come to mind.
But networking is about getting to know people, helping them where you can, and asking for help when you need it. It is a social relationship that happens to include getting things done in your personal and business worlds.
Yet, “how” networking is carried out can be a big mystery that “never eat alone” solves.
There are four sections to the book:
As noted, the mind-set of most people on networking is in the wrong place. This first section helps you get to the right place by talking about not keeping score, building your connections before you need them and points out some of the bad habits of “networking jerks.”
The Skill Set
This section of the book looks at the specific skills you needed to network. Skills such as taking names, doing your homework, and sharing your passions all come through in this section.
This section was chocked-full with good advice on the basics of networking moving to the higher end art of networking. This section is the “block and tackle” portion of the book that anyone can use to improve their connecting with people.
Turning Connections into Compatriots
This section addresses how to have advocates within your network of connections. These are people who will look out for you and your interests.
Trading Up and Giving Back
There is much commentary on the Internet about Personal Branding and part of what Keith addresses here is building your brand and broadcasting it.
Throughout the book, Keith also gives us “Hall of Fame” profiles of great networkers. From the modern (Vernon Jordan) to blasts from the past (Paul Revere), Keith gives us the reasons these people are great connectors. They are great illustrations of the ideas that he speaks to in his book.
I found the book easy to understand, readable – and I learned a lot from it. Keith name-drops – because he can – but, the key to me was the principles used to help others and building networks.
The book is networking at a high-level – but beginners and experienced networkers can learn a great deal from this book. In an age where our network is critical to our career and our personal well-being, this book can provide you the gateway to networking excellence – for all the right reasons.
Rated 5 of 5 Cubes — a great help for cubicle warriors.