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Would Oprah Say Networking is Dead?

When you work on a book it’s great to create a “hook” with your blog posts back to your book. I don’t think I could create any better place to start writing a series on celebrities and what they “might” say about the concept of networking being dead than Oprah. Since I’m a Chi-Town girl as Oprah once was and we could still say is (you can take Oprah out of Chicago but you can’t take Chicago out of Oprah!), then I feel I have some grounds to assess what she might say.

I also had the good fortune of coaching one of Oprah’s employees and, even more so of helping the person she first hired to run her radio show, get a job there.  It was because, even back five or more years ago, networking was dying and a new form of relationship building was being birthed. It was the beginning of . . . “The Relationship Economy.”

In Larry’s and my book, “Networking is Dead: Making Connections that Matter,” we talk about the various key strategies that individuals and companies need to use today to stay competitive in this rapidly changing landscape. It’s a formula I have used for more than a decade and it works. It works so well that Larry and I used it back when he was at Motorola as the head of leadership in one of the divisions and when he held a similar role at American Express. We found that people who take the time to: 1) identify their core values, 2) find others with similar and complementary core values, 3) connect thoughtfully with those others and 4) create vibrant “exchanges” toward respective and collective opportunities with those others . . . find themselves achieving better opportunities.

They also achieve better opportunities faster. This acceleration in goal achievement can scale–not just to a small group, but to many. This is what Oprah experienced. Just like we suggest with our formula, Oprah:

  • started on her AM Chicago show
  • found 10 or so amazingly talented thought leaders (e.g. Suzie Orman, Dr. Phil, Nate, Bob Green, etc) and bolsterized (that’s my word – e.g. “They’re Fabulous! was Oprah’s statements) their platforms. This is third-party endorsement, a transfer of trust at it’s best!
  • created a worldwide following as she focused on her building connection to one live and one HUGE, worldwide audience each show.
  • continued to build the careers of others as she taught the world great values, the first of which was “making a difference.”

So, as we say in “Networking is Dead,” that if you are finding that your old way of networking is not working, try our way. We guarantee it!

Melissa G Wilson

Melissa has been a leader in the book writing, publishing and marketing arena for the past two decades. To date, she has helped more than 100 thought leaders write, publish and market their books. Her clients include executives such as Dan Weinfurter a seven-time Inc 500 winner and Orlando Ashford, President of Holland Cruise Lines.

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