“It’s great to spend time at a networking event with someone you know and like. But that’s not what you’re there for. Your goal is to expand your network by meeting new people.”

~ Beth Ramsay

Perhaps, you once heard people say something like, “Your network is your net worth.” But, whether you have heard about the latter or otherwise, what I, humbly, want to tell you, basically, is:

The people you meet can add value to you. You mayn’t know who is watching you. The people you saw at the conference hall and refused to talk to can influence your decisions at a particular time or even become that "reference" or "recommendation" you are looking for so as to ‘land’ your dream job, complete your project, increase your sales, and bid for that contract straight away. In other words, never undervalue anyone. Emulate kindness and generosity. Interestingly, they are an example of a noble virtue!

Similarly, if you’re going to attend a summit, go fully prepared to learn, unlearn, and relearn from/connect with people. Pay attention, therefore, to what the astute speakers have to share with the audience and, importantly, pick up your pen and write your "takeaway": Those words of wisdom, quotes, insights, book titles, and any other relevant information which worths your kind attention. Network. Network. Network again.

By "network", I encourage you to ‘earn’ yourself a new set of "professional friends" and "potential associates". Some of them could—amazingly enough— become your mentors for good, growth, and humanity. Simply put, Porter Gale has the best assertion which goes thus: ‘The new form of networking is not about climbing a ladder to success; it’s about collaboration, cocreation, partnerships, and long-term values-based relationships.’

Verily, esteemed ladies and gentlemen, I feel I'm too small and intellectualy unfitted to inscribe a few words of advice here and there. What do I know? This isn't an act of pride, anyway!

Advisably, if you want to develop yourself, strive to go that "damn" extra mile. It pays oftentimes. Also, remember to do that positive, seemingly impossible thing a voice within you has always told you that you shouldn't do and to which you are but afraid. Don't be frightened because the Almighty is by your side. He hears. He sees... Always seek for His grace and bounty. Implore Him. He'll surely guide you on the right path and grant you what you desire.

Amiable brothers and sisters, this is not the time to fret and hold back. Face your fear, dear brethren. And, to quote a best-selling author of a widely-read publication, I will, in a succinct way, say that, "You don't have to be great to start. You have to start to be great."

Finally, dear readers, I’ll leave you with the words of Forbes’ Bianca Miller-Cole, a serial entrepreneur, personal branding expert, best selling author and speaker who helps ambitious people to thrive in their career and business life. In one of her many op-ed articles, she knelt it as follows: “You never can tell how much you know without listening to other people. Success in a career is largely attributed to the pool of information or ideas you have garnered over the past. When networks have been created, it fosters a trade of ideas to sustain long-term relationships and mutual trust. When you are receiving ideas, it helps both in your place of work and out, in addition to instilling best practices that soothe your career.”

Author of Les Larmes d'une Plume Esseulée, Adamu is a multilingual speaker & an emerging poet-writer. He's passionate about journalism & literature.