Today we are going to talk about communication, engagement, and networking. But first you may be asking yourself "aren't these all the same?" Well, the answer isn't a simple one. It is both yes and no. You can be doing all three simultaneously without even realizing it, or you could just be doing one or two. Or even none at all!
Starting with communication in business. This is something that you absolutely need. You need to communicate with those you work with, you need to communicate to your customers. Communication to be is more of a one way street. I work with Jon Olson and we consistently communicate back and forth letting each other know what is going on. This communication very quickly turns into engagement where we are both bouncing ideas and knowledge off of one another. But when I need to relay information in regards to the status of something that is being built, it is more technically considered as just communication. Basically just keep him up to date on what I am doing and accomplishing.
When we talk about engagement we are talking about multiple people expounding on a piece of information. This piece of information can be anything at all. We have a bit of engagement in the CTP Telegram group where multiple members help each other out and where we all talk and bounce ideas off of each other to help improve our businesses. Engagement is a two way street. You can also think of the biggest difference between communication and engagement like this:
This blog post that I am writing is a form of communication. I am simply putting information forward. As soon as you (the reader) reply to this, you are now engaging me in the conversation that I have created. Very soon I will reply to your comment and so forth creating a bit of a two way street also known as engagement!
Networking to me is kind of like engagement with a purpose of expanding capabilities. Networking allows me to meet new people and develop relationships. These relationships are the core of a community business. These relationships tend to develop into a help each other out sort of communication/engagement. For example if you begin engaging me on one of my blog posts and you see that I am really good with html and css, which may be something you are stuck on. You will then engage with me to get to know me better and subsequently as for my help with your html/css issue. Networking allows you to build bridges to other capabilities that previously did not exist. If I am looking for a programmer or developer or designer for something that I need done, I am more apt to use my "network" of people that I know and trust than to go and hire someone that I do not know yet. If I cannot find someone within my network, I will look at potential outside candidates and engage them in communication to get to know and understand their capabilities better before hiring them.
That is my outlook on communication, engagement, and networking. I would love to hear yours!