Posted by: davidsandusky | July 22, 2008

Where to Invest

I gave a talk a few days ago called “Networking to Sustain Your Personal Brand” to primarily job seekers.
After my interactive talk, many approached me after with their own story and more private questions not comfortable in a public forum. Typical fear and hard lessons learned. Then a professional executive assistant approached me and proved she was the smartest in the room. She thanked me and went on to say:
…there are plenty of opportunities out there, but we have to work a little harder to make it happen these days. I’m going to invest more than usual in myself right now! I am also going to scratch my prepared pitch and be myself – learning more about those I am about to meet.

I’ve heard from her since and know she is a star. Think I will refer her to some CEOs – oh yea! Smart businesses and smart people invest more, not less, when things tighten up out there. You?

You are the best place to invest during good and challenging times.  Becoming a true resource for your growing network will have a return on your investment.  Knowledge is power.  Read more, ask questions, network with smart people and add value.  Be that person who seems to know everybody…and when sent a lead, idea or connection of some kind, you know what to do. 

Even when you are viewed as an expert, smart people continue to invest in understanding or shaping trends so not to be old news.  Knowledge positions you to think for yourself when others are marketing agenda and respect your position in debate.   

By becoming a resource and expert with compassion, you’ll differentiate yourself. You’ll be useful and remain top of mind – building a sustainable personal brand! Tim Sanders points this concept out well in his book “Love is the Killer App ”. Great book to share with your boss, clients and partners and a great investment.

Most people understand that networking, or their network, is an important asset when something is needed.  Opportunity to help has gotten even easier because of the Internet and online communities like LinkedInFacebook and Personal Board of Advisors  just to name a few – more on that another day.   The effective networker is less concerned about themselves and more about the other person.  The commonly used term “bank balance” networking makes a lot of sense – deposit, deposit deposit to your network.  Our great collaborators are always networking – proactively connecting those who can benefit from the awarded relationship. Malcolm Gladwell points this out very well in his book “ The Tipping Point ” – Ch.2 The law of the Few: Connectors, Mavens and Salesmen.   Another great investment!  

Investing in YOU is smart.  Read books and blogs that add to your knowledge base.  Surround yourself with people that are better than you and give back to those who could learn from you – seek and be a mentor.  Build a personal board of advisors including paid for relationships for accountability and learning in areas where skin in the game will benefit you. 


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