Researcher, Klein, Ronald discussed on HBR IdeaCast

HBR IdeaCast


Next request an introduction is much easier. What if your goal is to diversify your network? Like, say, you only know people in the town where you live and you want to meet people from further away or so, you only know people in your industry and you want to expand your network or say, you only know people that are really your own demographic group. How can you be proactive about breaking out of that bubble? So the first thing you really need to do is audit your network and see in my, let's say the top two dozen people that I interact with from day to day how many of them are really similar to me and how many of them are different. And then when you find that list of different for most people, it's probably only gonna be about twenty five percent, which is a little depressing because most of us know we want a more diverse network, but what happens is organically, the network serves people that are self similar, but now that you have that list identified, you can be exactly what you said. Much more proactive about interacting with them, getting to know them better making a point to have more conversations and deeper conversations with them so that when you ask for an introduction, you're going to get people that are more similar to them not more similar to you. You because you've identified who those introduction should be coming through. So this whole friend of a friend keeping in touch with old friends approach is much more comfortable for me than like going to a networking event, but I am wondering, are there times when you should just suck it up and go to one of these events, even if you find them uncomfortable, are they in some ways useful and something that we should just force ourselves to do? So it depends on the type of it. Generally events that draw ever set of people where there's something other than connecting with people on the agenda. What in the research literature is often referred to as a shared activity, those tend to make for better connections. So this would be instead of going to the meet up for that industry or that sector that that industry group. For example, you go to the charity night where they're all going to work at this kitchen, or they're going to raise money for work on a habitat for humanity house or something like that, or even if it's just like a bowling night aiming at corneas. That sounds those things where there's some other purpose tend to. Create conversations where you get to know somebody from a broader set. So I want to ask you a little bit more about not meeting strangers or connecting with old friends, but expanding your network inside your organization. Because for a lot of this is actually where we really need to focus our time and effort. How can you start to do that? Especially if you don't have a lot of success going things like the company holiday party or the company summer outing, how can you get to know some other people in your company? So one of my favorite studies that we talked about in front of refund was completed by Dartmouth researcher Klein bomb, and it's this study about what he calls organizational misfits, people who kind of bounce around in the organization in the beginning of their career, and then actually go up the corporate ladder. If you wanna use that term but make career progress faster. They get better performance evaluations. They get promoted more often. They make more money, which is weird because originally they were bouncing around laterally from project to project. And the reason is is exactly what we've been talking about. They have a more. Verse network, they plug what researcher Ronald, Burt would refer to as structural holes, though sort of natural gaps in an organization's network that create silos that create turf wars, etc. These organizational misfits do that. Now you might not wanna stall your career out in the beginning, but it's a good comfort for some of us who feel like our careers going nowhere as long as it's going laterally in the long term, maybe it's okay, but I think you can still develop that kind of mentality of an organizational misfit by figuring out what are things I can. I can volunteer force. So there's usually in a large organization, there are external events that you can start volunteering to be on this committee for that or planning this event, but also a lot of meetings..

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