The Networking Game: Get 100 Points and 10x Your Results
7 min read

The Networking Game: Get 100 Points and 10x Your Results

Grow your professional network by racing to collect 100 points executing a collection of the best networking tips, tricks, hacks and ideas.
The Networking Game: Get 100 Points and 10x Your Results

Imagine two professionals, Billy and Johnny.

They both follow wildly different approaches to connecting with people during their careers. Here’s a quick summary:

  • Billy focuses on getting his job done and going home to his garden. He doesn’t actively build his network.
  • Johnny does his job and tends his garden too. But over time he also spends time building relationships with people who are vital to his company, industry and career path. Not only does he know these people, but they like him and they trust him.

Who do you think does better over time?

Yes, networking matters to everyone’s career. For that reason I’ve created a business networking game. I’ve collected all the best tips, tricks, hacks and ideas for you to grow and nurture your network. Some are quick and easy (1 point) and others are more of an investment (10 points). Your challenge is to collect 100 points, like, today.

Browse through them, stop when you see one you want to put into practice, implement that idea, update your score, then keep going. There’s some real gold here. Most are easy to implement and high-impact.

Who knows where they might lead you?

Remember, networking is about helping serendipity to happen. The bigger and more targeted your network and the higher your mindshare within that network, I bet it’s no coincidence you’ll start getting luckier.

Networks are a long term investment. Stick to it!

Quick Actionable Ideas

If you only have a few minutes to spare, here's my favourite 5 networking ideas you should consider executing right now:

  • Think of two people who should know each other but don’t, and introduce them. Follow through with them later to learn from whether that introduction was worthwhile, so you can get better at making introductions.
  • Host your own networking event. Email 10 of your friends and colleagues, book a place and date, and ask each person to bring someone new and interesting. Maybe only 5-10 will show up, but you’ll have an entertaining night and make valuable new connections.
  • Try a novel approach. Write a social post with an innovative message or angle, start a personal website with an interesting pitch. Use your imagination. One person famously created an Instagram resumé. This approach ended up getting the attention of Gary Vaynerchuk and he shared their CV with his millions of followers on Twitter.
  • Don’t join a club, start a club. In some ways, a club is the ultimate networking experience because the people you meet there all have shared experiences and the desire for new connections. Run the right way, a job club is a very positive and rewarding experience, a chance to help yourself and others. Plus, if you start it you can design it to suit your career goals.
  • Schedule a recurring catch-up with an important contact. Make tending to your network a priority by actually putting time on the calendar to do it. It may sound silly to formally schedule keeping in touch with people, but if you don’t, it means you’re not really prioritising it, and it probably won’t get done

Read on to play the game, if you’re leaving now, before you go you should sign up for free and I’ll send you updates.

How to Play the Game

Like I said, it’s easy. So there’s no excuse not to play it right now.

  1. Start browsing through the ideas.
  2. Stop when you see one you want to put into practice.
  3. Implement the idea, most take less than 2 minutes.
  4. Update your score using the score provided (from 1 to 10 points).
  5. You can do some activities more than once and earn multiple points. Then keep going until you reach 100 points.

Now go get to 100 points.

💡
Pro tip: it would be very smart of you to join my free email list and I'll send you my five best tips that will turbocharge your personal and professional trajectory.

Actionable Networking Ideas

Add a current colleague on LinkedIn (1 point).

Add a former colleague on LinkedIn (1 point).

Add a peer at a competing organisation (for example, someone who does your same job, but at another company) on LinkedIn (2 points).

Send a LinkedIn message to an industry connection asking them some questions or suggesting to set up a call to discuss the industry (5 points).

Contact a former co-worker, vendor or customer. Many times as we move from job to job, employer to employer, we lose touch with former co-workers, customers, and the like. These people all had a relationship with you before and could again — you simply need to reconnect with them (2 points).

Contact a former professor or college friend. One of the strongest ties that help in building new and strong network contacts is sharing the bond of a college or university. Yet we drift apart and don’t continue these important relationships (2 points).

Think of two people who should know each other but don’t, and introduce them. Follow through with them later to learn from whether that introduction was worthwhile, so you can get better at making introductions (5 points).

Host a networking breakfast (5 points).

Host a networking dinner (5 points).

Host your own networking event. Email 10 of your friends and colleagues, book a place and date, and ask each person to bring someone new and interesting. Maybe only 5-10 will show up, but you’ll have an entertaining night and make valuable new connections (10 points).

Send an email to a mentor asking for advice on a current career challenge that’s troubling you (10 points).

Start small. Start a conversation with your barista, your Uber driver, your hairdresser, anyone. Talk to strangers who share your commute every day. Practice makes permanent (2 points).

Ask members of your current network for referrals to people they think will be helpful to you and your career. There is no easier way to expand your network than to simply ask your current friends, family, and associates for the contact information of others whom they think would be beneficial for you to know. The “friend-of-a-friend” connection is quite strong and usually very successful. “Who else should I be talking to?” is a good question to use when asking for referrals (10 points each).

Find five of your friends who are connected to people you want to meet and ask them to introduce you. Send your friends two-three sentences they can use for the intro to make it easy for them (10 points).

Do a networking activity every single day for 10 days. Make it a habit. The more you do it, the better you will get at it. Connect with at least one person professionally every day, follow up with someone you already know or ask for an introduction from a mutual connection (10 points).

Ask someone with significance in your industry to be your career mentor. This person should be extremely successful in their area, and have built a broad and respected network themselves. They don’t need to be Elon Musk or Jeff Bezos. But they do need to be at least two career levels above you (5 points).

Tap your mentors’ networks by asking them to make introductions to people they feel will be helpful to you and your career (5 points).

Try a novel networking approach. Write a social post with an innovative message or angle, start a personal website with an interesting pitch. Use your imagination. One person famously created an Instagram resumé. This approach ended up getting the attention of Gary Vaynerchuk and he shared their CV with his millions of followers on Twitter (10 points).

Join a club related to a skill or industry you want to practice or learn more about. It might be a public speaking club or a local community like a regional startup club (5 points).

Don’t join a club, start a club. In some ways, a club is the ultimate networking experience because the people you meet there all have shared experiences and the desire for new connections. Run the right way, a job club is a very positive and rewarding experience, a chance to help yourself and others. Plus, if you start it you can design it to suit your career goals (10 points).

Join professional or trade organizations. No better method exists for finding people who share the same professional interests and goals than joining one or more industry organizations. Once you’re a member, you’ll usually get access to the membership list, which can open up many new prospective network contacts (10 points).

Attend a professional or trade meeting, show or conference. The great thing about trade shows and industry meetings and conferences is that you’ll encounter new people to meet and opportunities for both “meet-and-greets” and in-depth meetings. Seek out peers as well as more experienced members — and even speakers — to add to your network (10 points).

See if there’s a hackathon or similar event you can participate in, or even a project you can help with (5 points).

Attend a networking event. This technique is a no-brainer for adding more people to your network of contacts. Various groups hold networking events, including colleges, professional and industry associations, chambers of commerce, etc. Search online for details (5 points).

Spend some time volunteering. Providing your time and effort to a needy cause is perhaps a strong venue for networking (because you are working side-by-side with people who share your passion for helping others) but often overlooked by professionals either too busy or too focused on finding industry contacts. Find an organization that needs your help and start volunteering. Doing volunteer work will also give you a chance to meet people with whom you have something in common (10 points).

Schedule a recurring catch-up with an important contact. Make tending to your network a priority by actually putting time on the calendar to do it. It may sound silly to formally schedule keeping in touch with people, but if you don’t, it means you’re not really prioritising it, and it probably won’t get done (2 points).

🚀
Just quickly: Want to learn about five quick, easy and high-impact ideas you can use to achieve your career goals? You can just by joining my free email list.

Now Take The Next Step

I know you’re a smart professional.

You see the value in building your network (how could you not?). You’ve been growing your relationships and engaging in your industry.

So keep that momentum going. Stay on top of your networking activities to stay current and make sure that your networking efforts remain effective.

Your network is your ATM. Make it dispense $100 bills instead of $1s.

Before you go: I have interviewed 500+ professionals, surveyed thousands more, and I am always probing for their best tips, tricks and hacks to get ahead. There are five that stand out above the rest and you can get them right now by joining my free email list. You won’t find these ideas anywhere else.