43 Folders

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”What’s 43 Folders?”
43Folders.com is Merlin Mann’s website about finding the time and attention to do your best creative work.

HOWTO network without becoming a disingenuous weasel

Business Networking Advice: Merlin Mann from 43Folders.com - Interview

Josh asked me two interview questions about business networking, and I answered them. [Spoiler: historically, I've not been such a big fan of business networking]:

I have to admit that I loathe "networking" in what I take to be the conventional sense of the word -- to leverage friends and strangers for whatever intrinsic value their relationships can bring to oneself.

Consequently, I've always tried to avoid becoming one of those horrible little men who pretends to like everyone for the primary purpose of eventually pressing a crisp new business card into each of their palms while making a vague promise about future synergies and meals. That makes my skin crawl...

[The] heart of ethical and humane networking means not asking favors of others, but instead frequently doing unrequested propers for others. And expecting zilch in return.

So I guess networking, in an ideal world, just means you help your friends meet cool people as you do nice things for them. I can get behind that.

Also, if you are confused by the Snuffy Smith-style letter substitutions in the final line, please be informed that the word I had chosen was "**douchebag**."

Six Degrees of Separation, Networking, and Getting Funded &r's picture

[...] My answer to this question...

[...] My answer to this question of “how to get funded?” came from a journey through blogs- following the links! The journey- Opening my RSS reader, reading an interesting post on TechCrunch, engaging in the conversation, finding a couple of relevant links in the comments section, and then exploring even further. What did this journey make me realize? It really dawned on me that business is all about who you know- which isn’t such an earth-shattering realization. While PopSugar, the blog network that just raised $5 million, may be a great blog with lots of potential advertising revenue- it would have been very difficult to get funding without great connections. You’ve undoubtedly heard of “Six degrees of separation“- use the concept and tap into your network. Use LinkedIn or Myspace or Facebook (or one of the other hundred or so social networking platforms that have popped up recently) to find out who you are connected to. Good friends will gladly help you meet the right people. [...]




An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


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