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sábado, 23 de marzo de 2013

Networking workshop focused in projects

This week I have attended a workshop organized by the PMI Madrid Chapter, related to networking from a project management perspective, in order to find out if our networking skills are helping or damaging our projects, and how to improve our skills. The workshop was given by Pino Bethencourt, senior advisor to top leadership and founder of "Hill of Tara foundation".

The event took place in the meeting room of a hotel where there were several round tables. Just after Pino introduced herself, she asked: "Please stand up all of you who are sitting down in a table where you already know someone from before". Not surprisingly, in all the tables stood up at least 2 persons. This is something very common in Spain. We always sit nearby someone we already know even if we are attending a networking event where we should meet new people!! Of course, Pino requested to everybody to move to tables where we did not know anybody else.

The first exercise of the workshop consisted on discussing in each table which one are the benefits and disadvantages of networking from our point of view. In my table, and I guess in most of the other tables as well, we had never thought about networking in a project context, as we assumed that it was embedded in the communication plan of the project. After some brainstorming we chose these ones:

  • Benefits:
    • Increase the commitment of the project team members
    • Facilitates the professional relationships (key to have a first face to face meeting with each member)
    • Having a good network helps to get quick access to subject matters expert

  • Disadvantages:
    • It can create internal groups inside the project trying to influence to the others
    • Inequality in the team members may happen, getting the ones who are networked benefits
    • Informal relationships could be not alligned to the project communication plan
After putting in common our thoughts we got from Pino her definition for networking:

"Networking is the art of starting and developing mutual beneficial relationships in an strategic way".

It is key to remark, that both persons must get benefits from the relationship. Networking in one way, trying to get something from the another person, not offering anything in change, it does not work.

Recently I have heard about a scientific experiment where it has been measured that the human beings get higher levels of personal happinnes when we try to make happy to other people. This could be related to the law of attraction: Whatever you give, you get it back.

The workshop concluded with an exercise where we had to get introduced to other people in the room that we did not know from before, and then get and provide feedback about the verbal and non-verbal communication and feelings experienced when talking to the other person.

In conclusion, a very interesting workshop where we got some basics for networking, that helped us to perceive what is networking from different angles and perspectives.

1 comentario:

  1. If you plan on a long term career as a project manager, then yes, even with your level of experience, I would suggest getting your PMP. You can prepare yourself for the exam in one of the PMP training providers like You can do minimal prep-work to get 40 PMI® Contact Hours and apply to PMI for PMP Exam before the class begins.