stop networking, start building relationships

stop networking, start building relationships

“Saying hello doesn’t have an ROI. It’s about building relationships.”

— Gary Vaynerchuck

No matter who you are, no matter what you do, no matter where you live, keep this important truth always in mind: Life is relationships

No single human can thrive in their life — as brilliant, talented, wealthy or powerful they might be — without having meaningful and fulfilling relationships. 

We’re all aware of the common success adage: Your network is your net worth. While there’s great truth to it, many people, due to their lack of emotional intelligence and proper judgment, conclude that excelling in business and in life is all about having as many contacts as they can. They think networking is the end-all and they start looking at people as numbers instead of acknowledging, accepting and appreciating them for who they truly are — our fellow humans. 

They frequently go to “networking events” where all they care about is having shallow conversations and giving away their business cards to as many people as they can. While this strategy may work in the short-term, it’s not sound for the long-term. The main problem is the mindset behind it. Instead of creating and offering value to the other person, these networkers enter conversations with only one agenda: “What can I get from this person?”

The better and much superior approach is to focus on building relationships and let the network that you create be a natural outcome of that. It’s wise to remind yourself time and again that the primary purpose of any relationship is to give and serve the other person. 

People who are effective relationship builders only engage in interactions with one mindset, “What can I give to this person?” They know that less is more; instead of pursuing quantity, they focus on quality. Instead of hoarding contacts, numbers and emails, they practice minimalism and focus on having fewer but deeper connections. 

Never forget that every person that you come across brings with them an opportunity for you to serve and offer value to them. So, let go of the networking approach, and just focus on developing true and genuine friendships.  

In simple words, focus on connecting, not collecting. Focus on giving, not getting.

Life is already hard, why make it even harder by running haphazardly after people in order to build an impressive network? Why not take the simple and easy route and just work and spend time with like-minded people you gel with? Life will be a whole lot easier, work will seem effortless, and you’ll be much more relaxed and happier.