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Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other. John F. Kennedy

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Cultivate and maintain your network

Cultivate and maintain your network

Networks can be a real performance driver if they are carefully cultivated and maintained. Building an effective network hence requires methodical efforts that anyone can undertake.

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Even the most talented among us find it difficult to succeed without any assistance. Indeed, to advance our projects, find support, obtain information on domains we do not fully master, and even just to remain efficient, we must regularly call upon our entourage for help. An extensive and varied network effectively provides access to valuable sources of knowledge, expertise and influence.

However, trying to call upon an extensive network of contacts at the moment it is needed turns out to be a time-consuming and often fruitless pursuit. Indeed, if distant acquaintances do not remember you well, or you haven’t given sign of life for a long time, why would they bother to make an effort?

To capitalize fully on the role a network can play in supporting your performance, you must cultivate and develop it on a daily basis over time. This raises several questions. How do you avoid spending too much time on this activity? What sorts of initiatives are most relevant?

Counting primarily on the magic of luck and the pleasure of unexpected meetings is all well and good, but produces few results. The experts stress that proactive, structured steps prove to be most fruitful in this domain—an approach which does not prevent you from taking pleasure in developing your network!

- Approach networking in an altruistic frame of mind. Networking produces results only if you approach it with a mindset focused first and foremost on others and how you can best serve them.

- Adopt a true project approach. Efficient networking requires clarifying your strategy and planning your initiatives in consequence.

- Find efficiency drivers. Maintaining your network can be very time consuming. Simple initiatives make it possible to manage your time optimally without deteriorating the quality of your relationships.

Synopsis n.226a


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