Pivotal Moments Part 4: How Networking Saved Me

By 15 Sep ’16Blog, Networking

 “If you want to go somewhere, it’s best to find someone who has already been there.” Robert Kiyosaki

After a few years of coaching and facilitating executive meetings, it all stopped. I was confused because I thought it would just keep on coming—but it didn’t. Simultaneously, we were in the middle of a move to the Seattle area.

The landlord asked for proof of income. I told her what I had and she saw immediately that it wasn’t enough. “How do I know you can pay?” She said. “You don’t,” I replied. “All you need to know is that we’ve always paid. We’ll find a way.”

We’re thankful the she believed in us—later she became a great friend.

We were living in that uncomfortable space—where you’ve got to make something happen or else you’ll crash and burn. We were patient during that time. We networked. We made friends. Right as the money ran out, we got a call.

The consulting job was in a realm I hadn’t worked, but I remembered what a friend told me, sometimes you have to say ‘yes’ to everything and then figure it out later.

I accepted the offer and got to work. Being trained as a coach, I learned that most people already know what they need to know. And if they don’t, they probably know someone who does. It’s my job to help the client access that information, own it, and act.

What would happen if I applied that same technique to myself? How would that help me do the best work possible?

As I began poking around, it just so happened that two of my neighbors were consultants for Microsoft. I instantly knew I had to learn what they knew. Everybody in Seattle has a neighbor that works for Microsoft. Here’s what made the difference for me—I asked for help.

Maybe they liked me, or maybe they just loved talking about their work. But within a few months, they had prepared me to move into the project with confidence.

The client was well served. More work came. Eventually I had to hire help.

Something happened during that time of discomfort. It caused enough friction in me to where being self-sufficient wasn’t an option anymore. I had to get help. Robert Kioysaki said “the richest people in the world look for and build networks. Everyone else looks for work.” I couldn’t agree more. Within the web of your relationships lies the power to learn and do most anything. Are you accessing yours?

I’ve run out of money plenty of times since then. But the lesson I’ve taken with me is that when those times come, don’t panic. Be patient. Make friends. Build your network. This could happen through networking events or getting a certification you may need.

Stop seeing others as a target that’ll pay you money. Start seeing them as open doors into a huge web of relationships. Add value as you mingle there. Eventually, things will circle back around and you’ll be all right.

When have you learned the power of using your network? How did you add value? How did it eventually pay off? I’d love to hear about it.