Academic journal article Career Planning and Adult Development Journal

Strategic Connections: The New Face of Networking in A Collaborative World

Academic journal article Career Planning and Adult Development Journal

Strategic Connections: The New Face of Networking in A Collaborative World

Article excerpt

Strategic Connections: The New Face of Networking In A Collaborative World By Anne Baber, Lynne Waymon, Andre Alphonso, and Jim Wylde. 2015. AMACON, New York, New York, USA. 256 pages.

Strategic Connections is about networking in the 21st Century, networking with the goal of impacting big organizational initiatives, while, at the same time, creating your own professional success. Today's organizations are more collaborative, encouraging openness and transparency. Networking has become an essential professional skill-expected of everyone, at every level. This book shows the reader how to effectively network in today's climate.

The authors introduce the book by explaining "the why" of strategic networking: the intended result; the necessity of face-to-face versus quick networking; the benefits that can accrue. Several excellent charts/graphics provide an overview of the strategy. Paramount to success in creating an organizational impact, as well as in gaining professional recognition, are 'The 8 Competencies of Networking." Each competency is explained in a separate chapter wherein explicit and easy to implement actions are explained and outlined. Examples are cited that are straightforward, clear and easy to implement. Frequently asked questions, with answers, are typically included. The 8 Competencies presented and described are:

Competency #1 - commit to a new networker identity (how personality and mindset impact your ability to build relationships)

Competency #2 - take a strategic approach (align networking activities with organizational objectives; use networks to accomplish specific goals)

Competency #3 -envision your ideal network (identify potential contacts and capitalize on opportunities)

Competency # 4 - develop trusting relationships (the six stages of relationship development and the trust building process)

Competency #5 - increase your social acumen (become more comfortable, competent, and professional in all types of networking situations)

Competency #6 - deepen interactions (learn how to have effective conversations)

Competency #7 - communicate expertise (showcase your expertise without bragging)

Competency #8 - create new value (increase your contribution to your organization and create impact)

At the beginning, the authors give us a page describing how to use the book. This page provides recommendations and advises the reader that this is a book to be worked, not just read. …

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