“The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.”
~William Arthur Ward

It was a little breezy around here last week, and by “breezy” I mean a windstorm with gusts around sixty-five miles per hour that toppled large trees and knocked out power for around 800,000 homes. Immediately after that it got a little chilly around here, and by “chilly” I mean temperatures in the teens, where if your house doesn’t have power for several days, you get to experience living in forty degrees — inside.

That was where we were. Fortunately, I mentioned our predicament to several folks and received many kind offers of assistance. Instead of shivering in our beds, by the second night, we were warm and cozy, and enjoying the creature comforts of the modern age, thanks to our good friends, Tim and Kimber.

Remember this lesson when it comes to getting results from your networking. You have needs — whether you want clients, employees, vendors, or even advice. First, know what you want. Then — and this is the important part — you have to tell your connections. It’s funny what happens when you do…

… you get what you need.

I’ve seen this, time and again in my training programs. A participant shares her needs with a small group — sometimes only three or four others. Inevitably, one or two of them can provide whatever she needs or at least a path that gets her closer to the goal.

If — in our moment of need — I had chosen to keep our lack of heat and electricity to myself, we would have been mildly uncomfortable, and by “uncomfortable” I mean freezing and experiencing the delights of hypothermia. Don’t make the same mistake with your business. Share your need, and enjoy the most important benefit of having a powerful network…


This article originally appeared in the Connext Nation Newsletter April 2017 issue.