Do you care about networking?
I was at a networking meeting, speaking with a young lady with disinterested eyes that glazed over as she awaited someone more important to approach our table.
"Do you have a business card?", she asked.
"No, I don't have one. LinkedIn is my business card"
"Oh, I'll look you up."
"Looking forward to it. Do you remember my name?"
At which point, glazy eyes drew a complete blank, before she mumbled "No."
Networking is about caring
It's not about pretending to be interested.
It's not about telling everyone your amazing profile.
It's not about handing out business cards, destined to collect dust or go in the bin.
It's not about asking questions to determine whether this person might fit into your life.
It's not about connecting with as many people on LinkedIn as possible.
Networking is about caring:
Caring enough to write a personalised message to someone before connecting with them.
Caring enough to consider how you can help them, instead of caring for they can help you.
Caring enough to ask questions because you're genuinely interested in the other person and what they do.
Caring enough to listen to them and not wander off mentally.
If you care about networking, then don't care about business cards, start caring about people.