Developing personal networks by building relationships across the organisation (and externally), is one aspect that sets successful managers apart.
Not only will it help you in your role as a new manager, but these networks can survive throughout your career. They provide you with three distinct advantages:
- Access to private information
- Access to diverse skills, knowledge and advice
- Power (personal as opposed to formal, i.e. positional)
Starting your Network . . .
- Take a sheet of paper and split it into 3 columns. In column 1, list all the contacts you know
- In column 2, list “Who introduced me to this person?”
- In column 3, fill in “To whom did you introduce this contact” (the person in 1)
Tips for developing your network – become a “networker”
- Look for the person whose name keeps recurring in column 2 – these are good “networkers”. You need to develop more of these to increase your own network
- If “Self” appears frequently in column 2, you do not yet have enough “networkers”
If you do not have many names in column 3, then you yourself are not yet networking hard enough.
For more reading on this topic go to “Building relationships – how to increase your power and influence”
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Ian McMaster is Head of Learning & Development at BRC Partnership who assists leaders and managers to ask themselves the pertinent and essential questions so they can be more effective in their work.
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