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Stay Connected

Stay connected. That’s what everyone always says. That’s what the business magazines say, in order to create new business opportunities. That’s what parents tell their children when they go out with friends. That’s what professors tell their students when working on a group project. That is what bosses tell their employees when encouraging business relationships.

Stay connected.

Why should I stay connected? What the heck does that even mean?

To me, “connected” has several meanings:
1) to be attached to someone in a personal sense, in a relationship.
e.g. I am connected to my wife. I am connected to my children.
2) to be linked to another person in a business sense.
e.g. I am connected to the owner of XYZ Company, through our networking group.
3) to own, and use, a digital device, cell phone, computer, etc.
e.g. I am connected to the world, because I have an iPhone/Blackberry/cell phone/computer

Any of these ideas of being “connected” can apply to you, but why do they matter?

Being connected means that you know people. It means that you’ve taken the time to actually reach out and meet someone. You’ve put yourself out there, and gained a first-hand knowledge of someone else, and can now call that person your friend, acquaintance, confidant, or some other term of endearment.

But, what good does it do? Why does being “connected” matter? As Romeo said, “Let me count the ways…”

1) Share your ideas: two minds (or more) are better than one…most of the time
2) Networking: knowing more people usually is not a bad thing.
3) Reconnect: you never know who knows who, and how they might reconnect you with a person you knew in your past life.
4) Generate ideas: (see #1) need an idea for a blog (yes, I do!!!). How about a compensation plan for your employees?
5) Ask questions/Share knowledge: Do you have a question about your heating and cooling system? Your plumbing? Your monthly card game?
6) Recommendations: Need a service provider? Who better to ask than one of your connections? Who else do you trust more than someone you already know?

The list of pros, when it comes to being connected, can go on and on.(If any of my connections can add to that, I’d appreciate the help!)

Now the question is, HOW to be connected? What if I’m an introvert? What if I’m an extrovert, but tied to my desk all day? What if I’m in Sales? What if I’m not in Sales, but still want to be connected? What if I don’t like facing people?

In a world where everyone is connected (see meaning #3), there is no shortage of ways to get connected (see meaning #2) to others. There are also several ways to get connected (see meaning #1) to others as well, but that’s a whole other blog post.

What about the old fashioned way of meeting people though? Other than the ideas below, what can you do to get connected to people?
4) Rotary
5) Millard Business Association
6) Omaha Jaycees
7) Greater Omaha Young Professionals
8) Omaha Chamber of Commerce
9) Metro Omaha Business Coalition
10) BNI

Are you connected? If not, why? If you are, how did you get there? What are you doing to further your connections. What are the reasons you are trying to get connected?

Getting connected isn’t hard. It doesn’t have to be time-consuming. It will give back to you, whatever you put into it.

What are you putting into it?


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