In the previous part 1 of this 3-part article, I had highlighted the need to develop deep mastery in valuable skills and competencies relevant to the workplace. In this article, I shall discuss on the second point which is:
“Connect and collaborate. Networking is central. This network could be people that support you, people who inspire you”.
Who knows you versus who you know?
It is not about how many people you know but rather how many people know you! Do a simple scan – reflect for a moment on the people in your coterie, the people (excluding close friends and relatives) whom you can turn to when you have a tough problem to solve. I remember the workshop I have attended many years ago. I was then asked to list the number of people I knew and a list of people who knew me. To my surprise, I could hardly have a decent list of people who knew me! Curious as I was, I peeped through the lists of the other participants in my group. One had a long list of more than a hundred. I looked at him with awe and I said to myself: ‘No wonder he is so successful!’ At that time I was still unable to feel the impact of that exercise.
When I transited from being a corporate employee to becoming an adjunct trainer in 2007, I could only depend on a few friends to introduce training assignments to me. It was only through years of my work and creating a network of coterie that strangers now approach me to train and develop curricula for their organisations. These strangers have heard of me from their friends who are a coterie.
How to assemble a coterie?
A coterie is a group of people with special interests. Creating a network of supporters and assembling a coterie that can both support you and to combine their expertise with yours, goes beyond simple networking. Simple networking is about building the database and then reaching out to many people. This does not work for coterie who strives on relationships that are built on deep and mutual understanding of ideas and knowledge. These come not simply from reaching out, but rather from being prepared to listen and to learn, and having the capacity to attract like-minded people to support you. To really attract a coterie to you, it will take honing some important cooperative skills like becoming skilled at coaching, mentoring, learning how to make the best of diversity, and communicating well with people, even if they are virtual.
Acquire a global mindset
Over the past decades, technological connectivity combined with unlimited access to the world knowledge has created extraordinary opportunities for people to become part of the pool of global talents. It has now become a trend that people go overseas sometimes for months on end and high potential managers deployed to run overseas operations.
Goh Hin Lan | Professional Trainer and Curriculum Developer
Hin Lan is a trainer and curriculum developer. She is a firm believer in Lifelong Learning and enjoys attending all kinds of seminars and workshops for self-mastery and business excellence. Her experience in the corporate service included many diverse operational portfolios like project and business management. She conducts Employability Workshops and has delivered modules for ACTA, Leadership & People Management and Employability Skills. Hin Lan is also a content contributor for biipmi.