At this point, I have 466 friends on Facebook, 245 followers on Twitter, and 105 connections in Linked-In. Not very impressive quantitatively. But, you know what, those numbers don’t mean a thing. What matters is the countless meaningful conversations I have had with the people which these numbers represent. I guess now would be a good time to explain how I grew into the extensive network that I am slowly becoming part of.
It all started with Anthony Iannarino. You see, I had just started my career in sales wanted to learn all I could. As my job, for the first time in my life, required me to sit in front of a computer for 9-12 hours a day, I made full use of the Internet. Looking to strengthen my sales skills, I typed into Google the two words that would alter the course of my life: sales blog. Sure enough, through the magic of SEO, Anthony’s website, The Sales Blog, showed up at the top of the page. Curiously, I clicked the link…and opened the door into a whole new world.
In the coming months, I learned a ridiculous amount about sales. I learned the characteristics I would need to develop in order to be successful. I learned about differentiation and value creation. I learned about integrity and maintaining a positive attitude. I am confident that I would be able to learn all I needed to know by simply sitting at Anthony’s feet. But he did much more for me: he introduced me to his network…
After following Anthony on Twitter, I began to discover blog posts by other great sales people, including Dan Waldschmidt, Jim Keenan, Dave Brock, Kelley Robertson, and Mark Hunter. And then, after getting to know these brilliant men, I became acquainted with their networks. Then, I got to know the networks of their networks. Following this trail networks within networks, I have learned over the past few years a great number of things from a great many people. I can’t possibly acknowledge them all, but I will do my best to point out those who have influenced me the most.
I have been personally encouraged by Ron Emery, Walt Kustra, Liz Strauss, Paul Castain, Robert Terson, and many, many more wonderful people. These 25 names, believe it or not, make up a very short list.
Last month, I joined a community of bloggers, known as 12 Most, launched in June 2011 by Sean McGinnis and Daniel Newman. In addition to gaining the opportunity to become a regular contributor, I have had the pleasure of connecting with dozens of great people, including Gini Dietrich, Chris Westfall, Ellen Bremen, Kenna Griffin, and Peggy Fitzpatrick. Last week, 12 Most started a “tribe” on Triberr and, within the first week, the total page views on my blog doubled. More importantly, though, I’ve since connected with several interesting people, including Joel Brown, Stan Reeser, and Marya of Writing Happiness.
My network continues to grow and I am excited about the relationships I have yet to form. Thank you, Anthony Iannarino! You’ve helped me more than you will ever know!