It’s Not WHAT You Know, But WHO You Know–True or False?

How many times have you heard the phrase “It’s not what you know, but who you know” when it comes to determining success??  I’m willing to bet that over the course of your life to this point, you’ve heard it a lot.  Do you think it’s true?  Well, it’s not–it’s false.  It’s not what you know, or who you know–it’s how well you know them that really counts.

Here’s the difference.  How many people do you know?  Open up your e-mail address book and count the names.  You know as many people as are listed n your e-mail address book and probably a lot more.  Now, reach into your pocket and pull out your car keys.  How many of the people you know would you hand your car keys to?

Surely, now you understand that the importance of how well you know a person.  A contact is a person you know but with whom you have not yet established a strong relationship.  A connection, on the other hand, is someone who know you and trusts you because you’ve taken the time to establish credibility with that person.

Your network must not only be broad but also deep.  When you rely on others to cross-market your business or promote your program to a client, you’re not asking a simple favor.  For true referral networking, you need relationships that are deeper than mere contacts; you need strong connections, established well in advance.

So, beginning this week, focus on taking the time and energy to cultivate deep relationships by giving your referral sources anything and everything you can to help them succeed.  These will be the relationships you can count on when you need powerful connections because it really isn’t what you know or who you know–it’s how well you know them, how well they know you, and how well they know the people you want to meet.

5 thoughts on “It’s Not WHAT You Know, But WHO You Know–True or False?

  1. Funny how you get diverted on twitter. I was going to make a comment on Melvyn Bragg’s BBC Home Service ‘In Our Time’. Last week it was on Vasari and very interesting too. Melvyn steers three academics through the subject in 45 mins and it goes out live – just think of that in these days of canned material.
    Anyway before making my comment I saw Ivan Misner’s name and I thought lets have a look. I take the point its who you know well but I suggest to get to that point it is also what you know that you can talk about to who you know that starts ‘who you know well’. David Wimblett makes the point that its much easier to do business with some one you like.
    Kind regards

  2. The cliche neglects a key reality that who you know often relates to what you know, and the similar reality that what you know and how well you know it will lead you to the people you need to know. Einstein might have known his butcher really well, but would never hire him to be a physicist. He would hire someone he knew from among the high level physicists and students he met along his way. So, knowing Einstein would be an advantage, but you wouldn’t get to know him unless you were a physics brain and could relate to him.

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