In Entrepreneur magazine, writer Alina Tugend suggests we forget networking and become connectors and gives the reader some ideas on how to build connections.
One of the suggestions is, quite reasonably, to eschew networking events and join organisations you have a real interests in, like a sporting club.
Alina quotes Keith Ferrazzi, author of Never Eat Alone, who says he has never been to an official networking event.
“I have a friend who is the executive vice president of a large bank in Charlotte,” he writes in his book. “His networking hotspot is, of all places, the YMCA. He tells me that at 5 and 6 in the morning, the place is buzzing with exercise fanatics like himself getting in a workout before they go to the office. He scouts the place for entrepreneurs, current customers and prospects.”
Prowl gym locker rooms for business prospects? Sounds a bit creepy and you may end up with not quite the connections you expected.
I guess we could call it the Village People model of business development.