A Sprinkle a Day: Keep that Network Fresh!

Tools: Email access, phone or carrier pigeon, at least one business card you have received in the last year

Sprinkle in daily action for achievable doses of success.

Thirty crunches DONE is a bigger success than zero. Reaching out to your friend via text is better than not checking in at all. And, getting five hours of sleep is better than pulling an all-night blitz of work.

So, what’s the deal? If we know that we need to act, why don’t we? A 2012 Harvard Business Review article found that many people don’t have a clear link between the actions of today and the outcomes of tomorrow. This may be why it’s so hard to NOT stop in for a quick fast food option even though we know it causes weight gain and is not nutritious. It’s also why it’s really hard to take next steps in your networking journey, especially if you have to reach out and get connected to folks you don’t know.

An example: Three months ago I presented at a small but mighty conference for arts leaders in New York. The group was wonderful, the facilitators excellent and the content expansive. What was particularly impressive is that the consultancy group invited executive coaches to give critical and direct feedback to all participants. This would include notes about dress, presentation and network building!

What good fortune. As a presenter I decided to join the cohort a day early and benefited from the exposure to professional capacity building even as I was there to discuss fearless leadership in a non-profit.

One executive coach, moved to tears by my story suggested that we stay in touch. He encouraged me to continue to develop my consultancy and even told me when it would be great to catch up.

Did I?

Did I press the send button on the email I drafted?

Did I reach out to him to say thanks for his great work and candid response to my presentation?

Did I find him on LinkedIn just to say a quick hello?


I did not.

I’m not proud of it, but here’s the truth: he was an unknown quantity. The introvert in me sometimes wins the battle of the button and I just don’t hit send.

But as I am writing this, I resolve to do it – to sprinkle in the little steps and look for the big results.

Now all I have to do is find his card!

What little steps are you taking each day to build and sustain your network? Hit us up in the comments below.


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