Categories Business Networking

Five People You Need In Your Network

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

Maya Angelou

Five People You Need In Your Network

My parents always instilled in me the mantra, “You’ll be rewarded for your hard work.” But unfortunately, when I entered the workforce, I found out this simply isn’t always true. I’ve seen others get promotions and plum projects before me, not because of their skillset but because of their network of influence.

1. The Idealist: This is the person in your network you can dream with. No matter how “out there” your latest idea is, this person will help you brainstorm ways to make it happen. They are focused, without judgment, on helping you flesh out your dreams in high definition, even if you don’t yet have a solid plan on how to make it happen.

2. The Realist: On the flip side, you still need a person who will help you keep it real. This is the person who will give you the raised eyebrow when your expectations exceed your effort. These are not people who knock down your dreams; rather, they challenge you to actively make your dreams happen.

3. The Visionary: Visionaries inspire you by their journey. They are similar to Idealists but can help you envision an actual plan to reach your goal. One personal encounter with this type of person can powerfully change the direction of your thinking and your life.

4. The Partner: You need to have someone who is in a similar place and on a similar path in their career to share with. This is a person you can share the wins and woes with, as well as resources, opportunities and information.

5. The Wanna-Be: This is someone you can mentor-someone you can help shape and guide based on your experiences. One of the best ways to confirm that you understand something is to be able to explain it to someone else. And sometimes, one of the best motivators for pushing through obstacles and hardship is knowing that someone is watching and rooting for you.

Focus on building a diverse network by adding people from different industries, backgrounds, age groups and ethnic groups that fit into the roles listed above. Evaluate your current network and get started filling in the gaps.

Source: Tai Goodwin, The Career Makeover Coach, is a professional development coach specializing in career rejuvenation and reinvention. She is also host of the online radio show, Career Makeover Strategies.

Compiled by Cassandra Johnson/PCToday

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