People new to networking will often look to 'network' with people from completely different businesses. Last week an IT provider said he was reluctant to attend an event because many of the other attendees were also 'in IT'. I asked one of these other people who he preferred to network with. He said, "Thats easy. Other people in IT services and support. They know what I'm talking about and we very rarely compete even though it may look like we do something similar. The opportunities for working together or referring each other far outweigh any competitive concerns."
The reality is that people in similar businesses can form relationships much quicker than with those in different fields.
As I wrote in As I wrote in 'Applying the 7 habits to your business networking' habit 6 is 'Synergise'. Look for synergies whenever you meet people and add them to your network. The value of future collaboration will exceed the sum of what each of you could achieve on your own.
According to Wikipedia a synergy is where different entities cooperate advantageously for a final outcome. Simply defined, it means that the effect of the whole is greater than the sum of the effects of the individual parts. Although the whole will be greater than each individual part, this is not the concept of synergy. If used in a business application it means that teamwork will produce an overall better result than if each person was working toward the same goal individually.
*From the best selling Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey
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