book: Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi

This book was given to me by Scott Bonds and is a quick read. The premise and content of the book is a good reminder on building relationships. And while I agree with most of the content of the book, there are a few small points that I would differ with:

What’s your mission:
Ferrazzistates that you need to know where you are headed and should plan your life accordingly. Set goals, achieve goals. This is the model for most ambitious people. But it is not the model for ALL ambitious people.
A: As Ferrazzistates, the majority of ambitious people set goals and work backwards from that goal. In college, Bill Clinton wanted to be President by age 50. so he worked backwards from that goal. These are generally people I call “ladder climbers.”
B: but some ambitious people don’t set career goals. They just be. They embrace choas. And yet they are still somehow successful. That’s generally the model of the ambitious people in Silicon Valley.

Do Your Homework:
Ferrazzistates: “Whom you meet, how you meet them … should not be left to chance.” this again goes more with the ladder climber mentality. But by embracing choas, you can just take advantage of who you meet. Rather than setting a goal (like “I want to meet Richard Branson”), you can just say “I want to meet interesting people”

In general, it is good to meet people that you can help. You probably can’t help Richard Branson much — the meeting with him would be a one way street pointed at you. Instead, you might rather meet a newly graduated MBA student who you might be able to offer some advice and connections for.

I find interactions much more sucessful when I start them by helping others.

And you don’t need to play golf.

2 thoughts on “book: Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi

  1. Cliff Allen

    After a number of years of not achieving the specific, success/failure goals I had set for myself, I realized that I had actually achieved other successes that I just hadn’t thought of earlier.
    So, I like to think of career goals or life goals as somewhat nebulous, non-specific areas to move toward. There’s too much uncertainty in life to think that we can know ahead of time exactly what we’ll accomplish.

  2. Cem Sertoglu

    My years in the social networking software and services sector has put me face-to-face with many Ferrazzi-type networkers. Every time it feels awkward. I’d find it weird to set up a goal like “I want to meet Branson”. I can understand thinking “it’d be cool/fun/interesting/beneficial to meet Branson”, but making an introduction a goal seems a bit weird. I’ve always felt the same about political fundraisers, where one pays to eat in the same room with a politician.
    Many friends would disagree with me but, I think, being a natual networker is a talent and it’s difficult to plan and plot your way to social success.


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