April 13, 2008

Friends Remain

Posted in Careers, Life tagged , at 8:28 pm by Katelyn

Read With The Lobsters! – Every weekend, Katelyn and Lindsay discuss the book Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi in an effort to sharpen networking skills.

This weekend I finished reading Section One (The Mind Set) of Keith Ferrazzi’s Never Eat Alone. These are great introductory chapters that outline the need for a network and motivate you to alter your mindset and go out there to make lasting relationships & friends.  The summary points at the end of chapter 2: “Don’t Keep Score” are what really stuck with me from this section.

“Business cycles ebb and flow; your friends and trusted associates remain” (p. 21).

“Job security?  Experience will not save you in hard times, nor will hard work or talent” (p. 21).

Both of these statements really hit home for me in our current economic times.  I feel increasing uncertainty for not only what my personal career holds for me, but how the economy will effect my ability to find my dream job.   What I am learning when it comes to finding or landing the job you want is the importance of having contacts rather than an impressive resume.  And wouldn’t it be great if those contacts were not simply a friend of a friend, but someone you have a relationship with who can really vouch for you?

For now, I feel grateful to have a job I feel secure in, where I am learning and growing professionally.  I know though, that this will not be my last job, and I know that when I am ready to move on, I will need the help of those within my network.  Without knowing exactly where I want to go next, I am going to make it a point to meet and build relationships with people from all different areas of business and service, because you never know where they may be able to help you in the future.  So I plan on using this time while my job is good and steady to meet people and network as much as possible, so that when the timing is right, my relationships will be in place.

Speaking of building our careers and changing jobs – Ferazzi mentions a branding idea that I have heard before, but would like to mention here.

“Each of us is now a brand.  Gone are the days where your value as an employee was linked to your loyalty and seniority.  Companies use branding to develop strong, enduring relationships with customers.  In today’s fluid economy, you must do the same with your network.”

I plan on creating lasting impressions and really looking for relationships rather than simply a collection of business cards.  I plan on giving/helping before receiving.

I’ll keep you posted on my continued reading of this great-so-far book and also of my own networking experiences now that I am motivated and reminded of their importance.


  1. Diana said,

    I’ve been thinking of reading this book – thanks…will have to give it a go.

  2. It’s very important to remember that life is a two way street. The best way to get things from others really, is to be willing to give to them.

    Have you ever been with a person who really seems to bring out the best in others around them? That’s the kind of person I want to be, the kind of person who’s really interested in others. Start giving to people and it’s amazing how much they’ll give back.

  3. Katelyn said,

    @ Michael – I have a mentor exactly like that. When she is with me, she is completely focused and interested in my situation and is willing to help at anything. Definitely something to aspire to.

  4. I definitely agree about being that kind of person. I’ve noticed that not only are those kinds of people well-liked, but they also have a level of personal happiness that’s greater than those who are more concerned with themselves.

    I also liked how the book talked about not hoarding your connections or saving them for yourselves. He says it’s not about diminishing returns, but instead that “it’s the exercising of equity that builds equity”.

  5. Eric said,

    I was discussing this section with my friend. She brought up a good point. I mentioned in my comment on my last entry that I attend UC Berkeley. Well, it has a reputation for a very competitive, cutthroat environment, where people just tend to look out for themselves. Let me tell you, that reputation is well earned. Her concern was about being used; she didn’t see the point in being generous to people if they weren’t going to reciprocate and were just going to use her.

    My response to her was to be genuine. Be the type of person that anyone with a conscience would be ashamed to take advantage of. What are your thoughts on this?

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