| Book Excerpt
Truth or Delusion: Busting Networking’s Biggest Myths
By Ivan Misner, Ph.D.
Nelson Business; October 2006
Chapter 27 (pg.89-92)
It’s not what you know, or who you know—it’s how well you know them that really counts.
In truth, it begins with who you know because people would rather deal with someone they know, or who is recommended by someone they know, than with someone whose products or services are said to be superior. Even though they know they might find the new items more satisfactory, they feel safer staying with the familiar.
But it’s more than who you know. It’s how well you know
Most people who are not great networkers concentrate on getting more and more contacts in hopes of finding that one special person who will solve their business needs this month.
Master networkers know that a good contact is not necessarily a good connection. To grow the roots of your network deep, you can do three things:
1. BUILD QUALITY RELATIONSHIPS. Take time beyond normal business interactions to deepen your
relationships with referral sources. Invite them to social functions, learn their hobbies and interests, and help them pursue their personal goals.
2. NETWORK IN NEW PLACES. Other than your strong- and casual-contact groups, look for new areas
to find partners with common interests, such as charitable organizations and professional support
groups. Don’t prospect right away; let the relationships mature.
3. FOCUS ON OTHERS. Rather than having a “What’s in it for me?” mind-set, ask yourself, “What can I
do for this person?” Continually look for ways to bring business and benefits to others in any group that
you’re a part of. Make yourself known as the person who always has something for others. This is a
powerful way to both deepen and broaden your network.
Your network must be not only broad but also deep. Think of it not as hunting but as farming. Take the
time and energy to cultivate deep relationships by giving your referral sources anything and everything
you can to help them succeed. These will be relationships you can count on when you need powerful
connections. It’s not what you know or even who you know—it’s how well you know them, how well they
know you, and how well they know the people you want to meet.