When you first meet someone new, you have nothing in common. At least not that you know of. You are just two individual circles in a Venn Diagram, separate and distinct, with no shared areas. Like the lenses of John Lennon’s glasses. (Imagine that for a moment. It’s easy if you try.)
However, the more time you spend together the more the circles in your Venn Diagram will overlap, like the Mastercard logo. (Which is priceless.) This Venning happens for 3 reasons:
- Conversation reveals how much you have in common.
- You share everything new that you experience together.
- Through discussion, idea sharing, and learning you begin to incorporate their knowledge and thinking into your own.
This phenomenon of Venning is extremely valuable. It is key to friendship and courtship. It is how people with diverse backgrounds and experiences profit from each other. This sharing leads to understanding, acceptance, and ultimately to peace and goodwill.
Venning is the reason to network. By meeting others and learning what they know and who they know you not only grow the number of people you have in common with others, but you also incorporate their body of knowledge into your own.
This process can have a powerful influence on your career. By spending time with those who have more experience than you, you pick up their knowledge and techniques. It is key to apprenticeships, internships, mentorships, and probably building ships. You can quickly accelerate past the natural pace of learning and mistaking on your own through the guidance you receive from others.
Charlie ‘Tremendous’ Jones said, “You will be the same person in five years as you are today except for the people you meet and the books you read.” This is because both the books and the people will add to your knowledge, your way of thinking, and your ability to connect to others. And evidently, the more people you know the more likely you are to pick up a tremendous nickname.
Meet as many people as you can. Learn who and what they know. Absorb as much knowledge, experience and perspective as possible. Tap into their networks, and bring as many of their people into your own sphere as you can.
*If you know someone who could benefit from this message, please share it with them.