Nathaniel Whittemore, founder of pre-launch AssetMap, proposes a simple argument towards a fundamental principle of good networking:
- It's almost impossible to know what you're going to need in the near or distant future;
- Even when you know what you need, you have no idea who can help, or who can introduce you to the right person to help;
- When you do need something, you generally need it quickly;
- Therefore, start helping others now to build the good karma that will get you the help you need later.
So, in short, when meeting people at networking events, focus on how you can help them. This is a good philosophy, though by no means enough to become a great networker. It's certainly a very good starting point:
Whenever you meet someone at a networking event, ask yourself, "how can I help this person?"