Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Difference

Friend or networking connection?
I've noticed that a lot of people get confused by the difference between friends and strong networking connections. Let's compare them side-by-side so the difference is clear.


Networking connections:
Develop over months or years
We help them without expectation of return
They know about our goals and dreams
They want to see us succeed and will help whenever possible.
We call or meet them periodically in order to maintain the relationship
We like them.

Friends:
Develop over months or years
We help them without expectation of return
They know about our goals and dreams
They want to see us succeed and will help whenever possible.
We call or meet them periodically in order to maintain the relationship
We like them.

Wait a minute.

2 comments:

  1. Aristotle ranks a hierarchy of friendships, thus: some friends are merely mutually useful to each other; some find mutual pleasure in each others' company; while some are bound by mutual respect and a love of virtue. The highest order naturally includes the others.
    A networking contact starts out as the first kind of friend; and not every relationship in life goes all the way to the top; but every friendship, of whatever order, is based on a mutual well-wishing, a desire for the other person's good.

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  2. Hi, Collin

    Thank you for what is undoubtedly the most erudite comment that I've ever received on this blog (and I've got some pretty smart readers!).

    I like the hierarchy of friendship. I also think it's perfectly apropos that you say that a networking relationship starts out at the bottom (what relationship doesn't really). The best -- and most profitable for both parties -- networking connections can definitely ascend that hierarchy, too. In fact, one of the criteria I tell people to use before they even call for the first coffee date is to make sure that you can at least stand to talk with them. If you don't have some level of pleasure in each other's presence, then the connection is, at best, a weak one.

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