Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi is the definitive guide to Networking 2.0. Keith has been referred to as one of the most connected individuals in the world, and in this book he shows you why.Keith was brought up a child of a working class, but was afforded a very expensive education through the contacts and ingenuity of his father, who worked for a prominent businessman. Ever since he became a caddie on the golf course as a youth, he has realized the value of relationships, and harnessed their power to help himself and everyone he knows.
Never Eat Alone quickly debunks the notion that networking is handing out business cards to everyone you meet, or keeping track of who can do what for you, or who owes you what favor. This archaic form of doing business may have been the old school of networking, but in today’s business world your relationships must be built on generosity, trust and integrity. Whenever you meet someone, you should think “How can I help this person? Who do I know that they should meet?” If you can positively impact someone’s wealth, health or family, they’ll forever help you out.
One of the most useful tools in the book is what Keith calls his Relationship Action Plan (RAP). Your RAP consists of three columns – what I want to do, who can help me, and how do I meet them. At the beginning of each year, make a new RAP and figure out who you need to meet in order to achieve your goals for this year. Carry around a list of the top few people you need to meet, and always think about how you can get in touch with them.
This book has been recommended to me by many people from different walks of life, from my business coach to a past president of the Canadian Medical Association, and everyone loves it for the same reason: Never Eat Alone provides a definitive guide to building mutually beneficial relationships that help everyone succeed. No matter what phase of the business cycle you are in (even if you’re still in school) this is a book that you need to add to your personal and business development library.