…a blog series by Anthony Cogswell
I’ve spent a fair amount of time throughout this blog series analyzing the importance of networking. I think that the reason why this topic continues to surface is that I am being reminded on a daily basis of how critical it is to foster relationships and how positive the outcome can be when you actively focus on making connections in the world of public relations .
In the wake of my involvement in last week’s life science conference, my belief in this principle has been solidified. Reigniting old business relationships and creating new professional contacts at the event has already led to a wealth of new possibilities.
While staffing our tradeshow exhibit at the conference, I had the opportunity to share some downtime with Jack Faris, former CEO/President of the Washington Biotech & Biomed Association and senior consultant to The Fearey Group. Jack has experience in a wide breadth of professional ventures involving higher education, advertising, the aerospace industry, internal communications at UW, the development of the Gates Foundation, among others. Needless to say, I seized the opportunity to use his knowledge as a resource.
Over the course of our conversation, Jack shared a number of insights on building a successful career in the professional world that were eye-opening for me. He mentioned one idea in particular that has resonated throughout the last week and I don’t think I will ever forget it.
People always say, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” Jack articulated that this phrase cynically implies that even if you offer little value, knowing the right people will get you where you want to be in life. He said that a more accurate and constructive outlook would be, “It’s not who you know, but who knows you.” I took this to mean that professional connections are only useful when people know who you are, your work ethic, and your ability to produce unwavering results. Making superficial relationships and merely exchanging business cards or adding people on LinkedIn is a far cry from what it takes to actually produce a mutually beneficial connection. At the end of the day, building your reputation as a trustworthy and effective individual or agency is the best way to achieve success.
These ideas are representative of the very principles that The Fearey Group operates on as a foundation for business. This firm is known for producing measurable results through its dedication and ability to exceed the expectations of clients and partners.
Jack pretty much summed up what it takes to be successful in this industry. I’ve taken this idea to heart and will continue to strive to use it as a guiding standard in my public relations career. It’s all about making people aware of what you are capable of.