June 4, 2019
In today’s digital age, conversations about connectivity are dominated by infrastructure and the latest debate on 5G networks, but I prefer talking about connectivity in the context of people.
I didn’t realise it at the time but initiating, forming, developing and growing connections has underpinned my career since I left university more than 20 years ago.
When it comes to making connections, I’m still fascinated by the number of people in business who struggle or are reluctant to broaden their horizons beyond the obvious. Equally, I’m inspired when I hear about people pushing conventional boundaries of connectivity.
In delivering high-quality talent solutions to our customers, we rely heavily on our networks and the connections we maintain within them. They are an invaluable source of information, expertise and referrals. Those connections are essential to our success in finding the best talent for our customers – no matter where they are in the world.
Our teams work tirelessly to ensure they are connected with a breadth of stakeholders from suppliers to customers, trade bodies to Government officials, and everything in between.
In the pursuit of sourcing the very best talent, from all over the world, for our clients, the adage of ‘who you know’ is essential for success.
While the principles of making connections have remained consistent, how we go about doing it has evolved in the last decade, especially with the development of social media and other online platforms.
Making online connections is a great tool to supplement your activities, but should not be treated as a one-size-fits-all solution. I firmly believe mixing the methods is the most effective route to adopt.
Here are my thoughts on how to be successful when it comes to connectivity.
Manage your expectations: You are not going to see an immediate ‘return’ for building your connections. If you focus on building good networks, strong relationships and partnerships, the benefits will naturally flow. But if you focus solely on what you can get from the relationship, the opposite will happen.
Invest: You need to invest time and resource into developing your connections, but not to the detriment of delivering your day-to-day business. I recommend spreading the load; allocating responsibility across your team wherever possible.
It’s a two-way street: The most effective connections are those based on true collaboration. Proactively look for partnership opportunities, the connections and relationships forged through this will last a lifetime.
Authenticity: Not every connection you make will be right. But don’t worry about that, and don’t pretend if it’s not right. Be open, transparent and yourself.
Follow up: For me the follow up on any connection or introduction is essential, and doing so quickly after making contact. The momentum of dialogue is important at the outset.
The concept of an ever-shrinking world and the six degrees of separation principle originally set out by Karinthy in the early 1900s, is – in my view – even more relevant today.
Affording the time to develop and maintain connections is something we put into practice daily at Solutions Recruitment and I’d credit this as one of the reasons that our business continues to succeed.