Saturday, October 9, 2010

Seek First to Help, Then be Helped

Business networking site LinkedIn has a slogan, “Relationships Matter”.  Those two words sum up our lives, whether we’re referring to relationships with our friends or family, or in the case of LinkedIn, relationships with CEO’s and business professionals.  Relationships are all about connections, and very few know about connections on LinkedIn better than Steven Burda.

Relationships on LinkedIn are based around connections and recommendations. Steven Burda has over 38,000 connections and almost 3,000 recommendations. He is the most recommended person on LinkedIn, and is the person with the 4th largest number of connections. He holds an MBA and is also pursuing a doctoral degree. He says he has found personal development and growth through the connections he has made. He enjoys the opportunities to meet and to connect with people of various professions that he otherwise may not have had the opportunity to encounter.

On LinkedIn, Burda is considered an open networker. As an open networker, Burda connects with as many people as possible and will give anyone a chance. If you are connected with Steven Burda and you would like an introduction to someone else on LinkedIn, chances are Burda can make that introduction happen. And if he can, he definitely will. In fact, he writes on his LinkedIn profile: “All you have to do is ask... I will help you if I can.” He is more than willing to help others with their networking needs and will provide his contacts with a digital introduction. Burda merely seeks to help others. It makes him happy – he expects nothing in return. He is just trying to use his connections and recommendations to pay it forward. In the long run, though, he has been provided with many opportunities that he wouldn’t have otherwise received. That’s Karma for you. What comes around goes around. Keep spreading the good.

Relationships do matter, and this “pay it forward” concept of helping should be prevalent in your networking and relationship building endeavors. In Connected Culture you will find the quote “Seek first to help, then be helped,” These are words to live by – extend a hand to help others, and you will get help in return. This is the very heart of networking, online and offline. Start helping others, and you will get that help returned to you.

Share your story of how you paid it forward by entering your comments below.