Posts Tagged ‘connect’

Show Up

Problem:

You don’t know enough people, you’re not connected, you feel like you don’t know what’s going on, and you’re not contributing significantly.

Solution:

Show up. 

By that I mean a couple of things.  First, it means to actually show up at meetings or events where you can connect with other people and learn what’s happening.  Meetings always get a bad rap, everyone hates them and thinks  they’re a complete waste of time.  But I’ll let you in on a little secret: I love meetings.

The reason is because meetings are where you have the opportunity to connect with other people, to exchange ideas, to learn things, and to get involved.  The general disdain for meetings has come from poorly run meetings where you’re not engaged and the purpose is unclear.

So as you show up for meetings, participate and get involved, you’ll be able to have more people connections, and be recognized as someone who’s active and engaged in a lot of things.  Also, the more people you know (and what departments they work in) the more helpful you’ll be to other coworkers in the future who want to know about a particular area.  You can say you know so-and-so and point them in the right direction.

The second meaning of ‘show up’ is about being actively present in all that you do.  It’s about taking initiative and making something happen.  Don’t just be an observer.  Speak your mind, participate.  Your contributions are valuable, don’t hold back.

That’s how you begin to make a name for yourself and become recognized as someone who’s well connected.

Just show up.

What does ‘showing up’ mean to you?

Create a New Organization

Problem:

You’d like to collaborate more with other employees, but your corporate organization silos keep you from breaking out of your usual circle of interactions.

Solution:

Ignore the silos and create a new organization.

Organizations consist of two elements: 1) a purpose 2) people committed to accomplishing that purpose.

So, in order to create a new organization, the first thing you need to do is figure out what purpose you want to collaborate with others about.  Then, all you need to do is post your purpose in a place where people will see it, or where those who you think might be interested in that purpose will see it.

That might mean an  internal blog, or a web site, or even an email distribution list.  It could even be putting up flyers for a meeting in a certain conference room.

Then when people show up, connect.  It doesn’t matter how many.  If you get 3 people, that’s enough to start something.

And you don’t need permission from your boss or current organization.  People get together all the time to talk about what interests them, vacations, little league baseball, hot rods, etc. Your purpose just might have a little more meaning.

When you gather people around a subject, you’ve created a new organization.  You can connect, collaborate, and possibly make a difference (depending on your purpose.)  What ever organization they currently work in becomes irrelevant.  The silos disappear.

It’s almost too easy.

Stay Connected, Over Time

Problem:

You develop really close relationships with the people you work side by side with, then an opportunity comes along, or a reorganization, or for some reason you or they move to a different group and you never see them anymore.

Solution:

If you’ve developed a good friendship, it doesn’t take much effort to stay connected.  It could be months or even years later that you might run into them again and you would pick up right where you left off, it could be just like old times.  It’s always fun to see old friends.

What I’m suggesting is that you make an effort to make that happen, instead of it happening accidentally.

Every few months, or year, or whatever time period makes sense for your level of friendship, send your friends an email, or give them a phone call, or just show up at their desk and say “What’s up? How’s it going?  How’s the family?”  Maybe even take them out to lunch.

Reconnect and reminisce.  It’s so much fun, but it’s also very valuable and develops good grootship.  Not only will you find out about how they’re doing, but you’ll learn what’s happening in the old group, who’s doing what (did that one guy ever retire?), or how the company is working in that area.

This strengthens your connection, so in the future, if you ever need some information or help from that part of the company, you can just call up your friend and say “Do you know about…?”

This is easy, immediate, and free information or access that happens so much faster than filling out some form, or following a process, or calling a bunch of different people to find the right person you need.

Trusted networks are powerful.  It’s how things can get done fast in a large company.  So strengthen your network by staying connected, over long time periods.  You never know when you might need someone’s help, or when you might be able to help someone else.

Besides, it’s fun.