If you want to systematically build and maintain your network, you should know which levels you are on and which dimensions your personal “community” should have.
The three levels of professional networks:
1. your very personal lobby
2. your professional network
3. your network company
Your very personal lobby – Circle of Friends Plus
Whether you are employed or self-employed, whether you work in a corporation, in a craft business or in a supermarket: in order to achieve your dreams, or professional goals, respectively, a private network of relationships is immensely helpful. This is a group of people who are in a trusting relationship with you, with whom you are in (more or less) regular contact and whom you can still call at night with a problem or a request.
What is my inner circle?
Everything is loosely and decentrally organised and semi-private: you meet, you help each other, the relationships have little to do with your current professional position, or do not depend on it. Even if you are unemployed tomorrow, these people will support you. It is the “inner circle” that accompanies you through changes of profession and location over the years. This network can coexist with your other activities (membership of clubs, professional associations, etc.) and will certainly only partially overlap with them.
The sole purpose of this network is to get you where you want to go faster, personally and professionally, and to be a kind of “Circle of Friends Plus”. Beyond that, of course, it should inspire you, provide you with personal enrichment and also be a kind of refuge from the “wild world” out there. Building up such a network of relationships is difficult and takes a long time, but it makes sense for anyone who still has something in mind. If you build and maintain such a covenant with tact, patience and system, you will go through life much easier and more fulfilled.