Building sustainable networks needs cultivating our relationships overtime. To achieve this, we need to replace our long-time conditioned mindset. When the agriculture revolution first appeared, two separate classes emerged: land owners and those who worked for them. In the industrial revolution, another type of ownership was added. That is, the capitalist factory owner. As such, we had a few minority capitalists who own factories and the sweeping majority who worked for them. People were networking with each other based on the location. Now, with the information revolution, we are now enjoying location freedom. Freedom from the constraints of lands and factories. A different kind of networking is taking place: a networking based on sharing ideas.
The industrial revolution, not so long ago, networked people in compartments. The whole system of living was structured to create houses for workers that arrived from different parts of the country. The basic concept was to build cohesive communities of working class people that could work as a team and connect with each other. But reality is: everyone went disconnected with the other. They are encircled physically but suffered loneliness and alienation. Every one lived in his own apartment not sharing any interests with next doors.
Technology nowadays has managed to liberate us from dependence on land, factories and even office buildings. Instead of relying on the landlord in the agricultural era or the factory capitalist in the industrial age for our survival, we rely on sharing others, regardless of their whereabouts, our ideas and creativity. It’s a totally different landscape. The community each one builds will be through the internet. The net will be a tool not a place to live. We will earn a living through offering services to others and sharing the same set of values and dreams. We will network through different platforms; working with a mindset of giving first, receiving and profiting afterwards. Networking is aimed at uplifting, generosity and shared interests.
Michelle Obama was recently honored by Time Magazine as one of the most 100 influential people in 2019. Throughout her 8 years as the first lady, she was adamant on playing a role in helping build a better tomorrow for her country. She was concerned about health, especially childhood obesity. Faced with the horrible implications of overweight as more than one in four young people are unqualified for military service because of their weigh, she seeks to network with her community reiterating the fact that obesity isn’t just a public health issue; it has consequential threats on economy. Even worse, it has a national security threat as well.
In her new book, Becoming, she takes the opportunity to invite readers into her world – a world designed by sheer vision and willpower. Her mesmerizing storytelling of how to balance the demands of motherhood and work was really fascinating. She connects with readers through sharing her triumphs ad disappointments. Her stories inspire us of the need to steer our lives and have clarity of vision. Bridging the gap between being, as a child of working middle-class parents, and becoming the world’s first lady, is a huge undertaking of a great leader.
Networking is about building and cultivating relationships. It takes a new and updated mindset to thrive in cultivating this timely skill. It is a skill learned through giving before receiving, socializing before commercializing, and farming before hunting.