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Arbind Chaudhary

Professor Cynthia Garza

TELS 3340

November 22, 2016

How Leaders Create and Use Networks

A network is a great way to expand the world we live in and whether we are talking about
formal meetings, events, continuing education classes, social gatherings or other functions, they
are all prime opportunities to meet new people and further relations with those we would like to
know better. In order to accomplish that, we must first set our intentions and must have a
workable game plan to implement.

Same as a network in general, business network is a key skill to become a successful

leader. It is not mandatory or required to build up a network. Imagine if you own a small
business with fewer employees, it is easy to manage and work on own. But what if there are
more than hundreds or thousands employee to deal with it is almost impossible to handle it by
own. Networking plays vital in these situations. We need to have a manpower especially a good
relationship with the employees and in order to do that leader must pose a better networking

Building a personal contact, to get support feedback, insight, resources, -information is

one of the most self-evident and one of the most dreaded developmental challenges that aspiring
leaders must address. Rising up the ranks more or less has to do with the technical skills a
manager bears, but when challenged to go beyond their comfort zone to perform a certain task-
most of the managers fail to do so. Most of them believe that interaction with other and spending
a time to building a network is a complete waste of time. But that's not true at all. Instead, it is
the heart of the new leadership roles in reality. People do have a misconception about networking
and most of them find networking insincere and manipulative, which I believe is wrong way of
looking at it. It is, in fact, the most important tools to take a business to a greater height by
keeping all employees intact.

To build a better network, there are three distinct but independent forms of networking.
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Operational Networking
Personal Networking
Strategic Networking

Operational Networking:

It focuses and helps to manage internal responsibilities. The contacts that are involved are
mostly internal and oriented towards internal demand. They serve the purpose of getting work
done efficiently and maintaining the capacities and functions required for the group. All the key
contacts that are involved are relatively non-discretionary. They are prescribed mostly by the task
and organizational structure, so it is very clear who is relevant. But that's not the case all the time
in operational networking. Sometimes they often include peers within a unit, the internal
employee who has the ability to help in the project and key outsiders such as suppliers,
distributors and customers. The main purpose of maintaining this networking is to build a trust
and to know one another entirely in order to accomplish their immediate task. This is a
straightforward networking that determining if people involved in certain jobs are necessary or
they are not as important to do the certain jobs.

Besides building up the network, the operational networking has downsides as well. As it
mainly focuses on the work that needed to be done, it does miss the key factors sometimes,
besides doing certain task. As for e.g., if some manager is spending all the time and effort to do a
specific task and after getting the work done, what if he/she realize that all the work they did was
not fruitful and board of directors has changed the game plan. Now that's frustrating. "Most of
the managers do not exercise as much personal choice in assembling operational relationships as
they do in weaving personal and strategic networks because to a large extent the right
relationship are prescribed by the job and organizational structure". Most of the relations that are
tied with the outsiders like customers and regulators are determined at the higher level.

Personal Networking:

It has been seen, most managers struggle after they are placed out of their comfort zone. If
certain people only focus on getting a work done, they do struggle a lot afterward because all
they bear a knowledge of specific skills. So in this case, they need to work and rely on outsiders
which may be professional associations, alumni groups, clubs and personal interest communities.
This is what personal network is all about. It helps to gain social skills among the people they
don't know. It also helps in getting important referrals, information, and, often development
supports such as coaching and mentoring. Most of the key contacts are external and are inclined
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more toward current interests and future potential. They are mostly discretionary and is not clear
who is relevant. The main purpose of maintaining these contact is to have potential referrals for
useful information.

Personal networking can also be a safe space for personal development and it is a safe way to
express problems and seek help to improve it. Imagine if someone's has poor knowledge of
doing certain things or lack the ability to do it, it is not the safe practice to discuss internally. It
might put his/her job in jeopardy. Instead, it is safe to discuss with outsiders to build up the
required skills.

So, managers who know they have not looked into personal networking, they should
better start doing it. This might help them tackle all the problems that lie ahead. Although
personal networking doesn't lead manager through the leadership transition alone- manager must
possess the knowledge of how to bring connections to bear on organization strategy.

Strategic Networking:

Unlike operational and personal networking, a strategic networking is the mixture of both. It
basically serves the purpose of figuring out future priorities. It is defined goal and a strategy to
get that goal. All the key contacts are both internal and external and are always oriented towards
future priorities. It includes the links between both inside and outside. Lacking these skills might
result in a disaster in near future. No matter how much someone is dedicated towards their jobs,
no matter how effectively someone perform the certain task, if they don't change or approach
different perception, they might end of losing their jobs. I believe this is what Author is trying to
explain when he mentioned: "Sophie who after rising steadily through the ranks in logistics and
distribution was stupefied to learn that CEO was considering a radical re-organization of her
function that would strip her of some responsibilities".

Skills like strategic networking differentiate a leader from a manager. It is the ability to figure
out where to go and to work with people that may help us get to our goals. It include and is not
limited to recruiting stakeholders, lining up allies and sympathizers, diagnosing the political
landscape. The key to being a good strategic network is leverage: the ability to use information
from one sector and applying it to different sectors. The strategic network doesn't only influence
their relational environment but also helps to shape their own image by moving and hiring
subordinates, getting better suppliers and financing source and even re-structuring their boards to
create the network that reaches out to business goals.
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To build up the better and strong network, managers/leaders need to consider practicing the
following approach.

Just do it: One can probably argue on, - "Why we need to build up contact"? The answer
to this question is "work". All networking we do is somehow related to the job that needs
to be done. The only way is how we do it. The trick behind is to leverage the elements
from each domain of networking into the others.

Mind your mind-set: It is always better to have a right role-model. Sometimes even we
put all the hard work and effort, the outcome is entirely opposite than expected. So, it's
not bad at all to see how others are doing the certain task and if it works, it is safe to
apply that management style strategy.

Work from outside in: Although sometimes people may be from the different background,
if they bear a common ground - it is safe to build up a relation with outsiders. Most
managers build the outside-inside connection by using their functional interest or

Ask yourself and you- shall receive: A network lives and flourishes only when it is used.
Sometimes people wait too long to initiate the first conversation. That is something
needed to avoid. Doing something and making network among people builds up
confidence and helps in personal development & improvement.

Re- allocate your time: It is best to participate and mastered the art of delegation. If not
done so, we might end of getting surprise and shock at the leadership position. To get out
of it or to prevent it from happening, effective business leaders need to spend a frequent
amount of time every day to gather the information needed to meet their goals.

Stick to it: Building a leadership skill is less a matter of skill than will. Most managers
quit building the network when they don't get the desirable outcomes or rewards in doing
so. But leaders need to understand that networking is not a goal, instead, it is the
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fundamental and required steps needed to be taken to reach to our set goals. And
managers who stick to it tend to be more successful than who doesn't.

Networking is essential tools to be a successful leader. It provides support, feedback,

insight, and resources. It is an essential activity for an ambiguous manager and working in
networking help things done effectively and in timely manners. It is basically "who you are" over
"what you know". It is always safe to have the proper role model and strategy to run a business
and with the lack of these networking skills- it is not possible to be great leaders.

After doing the case study over 30 managers, it is found out that there is three distinct
form of networking. Operational networking focuses on getting the task done effectively and
involves cultivating the stronger relationship with the colleagues whose membership is clear.
Personal networking involves contact outside the organization and is helpful in finding
opportunities in personal development. At last but certainly not the least, strategic networking
put the tools of networking in the service of business goals. And the leaders who have the ability
to apply these networking skills, turned out to be successful in managing the business and in
achieving the targeted goals.
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Works Cited
Herminia Ibarra and Mark Hunter. "How Leaders Create and Use Networks?" January
2007, Harvard Business Review.