Jaimie Field is bringing us a great post for networking week today, focused on the an idea that I fully embrace, that networking happens all the time, everywhere.

***

Monday, February 4th was my birthday.  (Yes, this is a shameless plug for you to send me belated birthday wishes.) After a long day at the office, I went to see my favorite musician play at a wonderful location in New York City.

The interesting thing about his location is that it is sort of like dinner theater – there are tables and bar tops set up around the venue.  If you do not purchase all of the seats at the table, you will be sitting with people you may not know.  Nothing wrong with this, particularly if you know that you should network with the people at your table.

Which I did.

Turns out I was sitting with an attorney who works with one of the top law firms in the country and her fine-artist husband.  Now, because my ideal client is attorneys, this could prove to be a great meeting. I may get a new client or I may get some referrals to her colleagues.  We exchanged business cards, and I plan on trying to create a relationship with this person.   And, because we have something in common – the love of this musician – we have a great start to try to build that relationship upon.

The point is, you never know who you are going to meet and where you are going to meet them.

I often tell the story of one of my clients, an attorney who was going through a brand new divorce, who went to a fast food restaurant with his little kids on “his weekend”.  While standing in line, his kids were running around like little maniacs.  Thankfully, as he put it, so were the kids of the guy behind him.  Before he worked with me, he would have been mortified that his kids were acting that way.  Instead, he turned to the guy behind him and asked: “Your weekend?”  To which the gentlemen sighed: “Yup – and this is a new thing.”

Turns out the guy behind him was also just going through a divorce and wasn’t sure how to handle it.

This lead to my client and the guy behind him, and their kids, sitting together for lunch; and after lunch, while the kids went into the fast food restaurant’s indoor playground, the two men chatted about what they had in common  – their new divorce.  Well, the guy was the CEO of a company that my client really would have liked to have for a client.  So, they also talked business and how my client could help the CEO.

Within a week, my client was the new outside counsel for this company and he and the CEO have become great friends.  Further, the CEO has referred numerous new clients to my client.

The point is, you never know who you are going to meet and where you are going to meet them.

You never know which one person can change the trajectory of your career – so talk to everyone.

And you never know who and how you can help others unless you meet them, even in line, or sitting next to them at a theater.

So you must network all of the time, everywhere and everywhere.

 

Print:
EmailTweetLikeLinkedIn
Photo of Lindsay Griffiths Lindsay Griffiths

Lindsay Griffiths is the International Lawyers Network’s Executive Director. In this capacity, Ms. Griffiths is responsible for the oversight and management of day-to-day operations of the International Lawyers Network (ILN). She develops strategies and implementation plans to achieve the ILN’s goals, and handles…

Lindsay Griffiths is the International Lawyers Network’s Executive Director. In this capacity, Ms. Griffiths is responsible for the oversight and management of day-to-day operations of the International Lawyers Network (ILN). She develops strategies and implementation plans to achieve the ILN’s goals, and handles recruitment, member retention, and a high level of service to members. She is engaged in the legal industry to stay on top of trends, both in law firms and law firm networks.

In her role as Executive Director, she develops and facilitates relationships among ILN member firm lawyers at 90+ law firms in 67 countries, and seeks opportunities for member firms to build business and relationships, while ensuring member participation in Network events and initiatives. These initiatives include facilitating referrals, the management and execution of the marketing and business development strategy for the Network, which encompasses all communications, push-down efforts, and marketing partnerships, providing support and guidance to the chairs and group leaders for the ILN’s thirteen practice and industry specialty groups, the ILN’s women’s initiative, the ILN’s mentorship program, the management and execution of all ILN conferences, and more.

JD Supra Readers Choice Top Author 2019

During her previous tenure as Director of Global Relationship Management, the ILN has been shortlisted as a Global Law Firm Network of the Year by The Lawyer for 2016 and 2017, and included as a Chambers & Partners Leading Law Firm Network since 2011. She was awarded “Thought Leader of the Year” by the Legal Marketing Association’s New York chapter in 2014 for her substantive contributions to the industry, and was recently included in Clio’s list for “34 People in Legal You Should Follow on Twitter.” She was also chosen for the American Bar Association Journal’s inaugural Web 100‘s Best Law Blogs, where judge Ivy Grey said “This blog is outstanding, thoughtful and useful.” Ms. Griffiths was recently chosen for as a Top Author by JD Supra in their 2019 Readers’ Choice Awards, for the level of engagement and visibility she attained with readers on the topic of marketing & business development. She has been the author of Zen & the Art of Legal Networking since February of 2009.