Students hear it every day at school or work that networking is one of the most important activities you will do in your everyday life. Networking is said to be one of the single most powerful tactics in marketing, advertising and PR that you could do to sustain success for yourself or your company/organization as a whole says businessman Adam Small.
The concept of networking has always been drilled into my head and I’m obviously aware of its importance being a PR major in a major university, but something struck me today that made me really realize it.
Today I had the pleasure of working with a small photography company while being on staff for my internship at a Fox Sports event in Dallas. The photography company was run by two people who explained to us (the interns) about their humble beginning in the photography industry. They were a small company that mainly did work for friends, family and whatever small clients they had at the time. Of course the question was raised how they eventually ended up with Fox Sports since it’s such a well-known major company and they explained to us that it was all thanks to one man.
While working for a small client taking her pictures, the woman had met a man who did public relations work for the Texas Rangers just at random. They got to talking and the man loved her pictures so he referred her to the Rangers HR department to staff them for photography opportunities at games. The Rangers contacted them back within the proceeding weeks and offered them a small photography gig to test their abilities at the ball park. They did amazing work for the Rangers and from there they were referred to the Stars, then the Cowboys and from there the Dallas Mavericks.
They now work photography booths and do different events involving photography at so many major sporting events. This story really brought to home the concept of networking and how it is so incredibly important. One man changed this company and this womans life as she knows it and it was all by doing what we all can do, communicating. She was such a pleasure to work with and her story inspired me to keep doing all I can do to make it as far as I am meant to go.
I’m a pretty strong believer that it isn’t always about what you can do but who you know that can help you achieve what you want to. There will be many times in life when you will be perfectly qualified for a position or a project and you won’t get it above someone else and a majority of the time that can be attributed to who they know through networking.
Networking is always a huge proponent in my life no matter what I’m doing, I try to make sure I never burn bridges. You never know when you will need someone, and if you have networked correctly they will be there to help you. Also, networking isn’t always about gaining success but about making deep connections and relationships with people like or different from you. You never know what you could learn from them.
Small, Adam. “Referral Network.” Strategic Business Network. Strategic Business Network, n.d. Web. 25 Jan. 2014.