If you’ve ever spent more than say, five minutes with us, you’ll know that we love all things planning, organized, and structured. Heck, we make plans to make plans in our business! So, it’ll come as no surprise that we recommend even taking a thoughtful approach to networking.

Now, the true magic of networking is all of the amazing people you meet who you didn’t expect to meet. It’s invigorating when you make a great connection with someone who wasn’t even on your radar. It’s the unexpected that we seek when get out and network in our business lives. Of course the downside of networking is spending your valuable time meeting people who, while we’re sure they’re very nice, aren’t going to do much for your business.  

About a year ago, we were inspired by a talk we heard from social media expert Chris Young. He told the crowd about his ‘Top 100’ list for Twitter, and how he’d created and tackled a list of the Twitter users he wanted to get to know. We were inspired.
 
Why not make a Top 10 (20, 50, 100) list of the people you want to meet? Rather than just waiting and seeing who you might bump into, spend some time thinking about people who you think could help you (either by way of connections, advice or inspiration) and write them on your list. Then figure out where they go and go meet them! Follow them on Twitter and Facebook, drop them a line or place a call and see if you can’t bridge the distance. Every few months, look up and see how well you’re doing with your list. Maybe you can add some new names at that point. Before long, we’ll bet you are finding yourself on somebody else’s Top 10 list!