Article by: MaryEllen | Friday, February 28, 2014

The only networking book you’ll ever need.

How many people can you rely on in times of trouble? Networking is crucial in business and in your personal life. It can lead to a more fulfilling existence and it can be your ticket out of some of the nastiest of situations. If you want to be happy and successful, you need to learn how to build contacts, and there are few other books about networking that can compare with Dig Your Well Before You’re Thirsty: The Only Networking Book You’ll Ever Need, written by Harvey Mackay, a successful CEO and master networker.

Harvey Mackay is the bestselling author of the successful Swim with the Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive and Beware the Naked Man Who Offers You His Shirt – books that have sold millions of copies. He is the corporate CEO and founder of the Mackay Mitchell Envelope Company, a civic leader and a nationally syndicated columnist. He is also one of the most popular and entertaining business speakers, a man with many friends, and a man with an amazing life story.

According to Mackay, nurturing a network of contacts is a great ability that you can learn at any point in your life. His book is an excellent resource whether you are unemployed, looking for a job, employed or an entrepreneur. It’s an excellent read if you are trying to move up in an organization, if you work in sales, or if you just want more friends. It’s highly recommended to independent people, as networking will round out your skill set and help you achieve your goals.

The book is divided in ten steps or sections, which lead you through all the stages and secrets of good networking. Through captivating stories, Mackay teaches you the basics: what is a network, who should be in it, how to meet new people, how to let others remember you, where to start networking and how to keep your network. It shows you how to manage and downsize your list of contacts, and how to keep track of favors that you have done and have been done for you.

Everybody knows how easy it can be to lose contact with people, but it is important to keep up with one’s various relationships. Through stories, examples and advice, Mackay shows you how to maintain relationships with as many different people as possible. You will find different strategies for establishing ties with new people and Mackay presents the four basic elements of networking, through the use of the acronym RISK: Reciprocity, Interdependency, Sharing and Keeping At It.  He stresses the importance of honesty and full disclosure in networking and believes that you should treat others with dignity and respect, stay in touch and show genuine concern in them.

Networking can be an enjoyable activity and the author advises against the aggressive, pushy and egoistical ways of networking. Relationships are enriching and will contribute to the quality of your life, so you need to be able to invest more than just time.  The methods he promotes are easily applicable. For instance, Mackay explains how you should do what you love, and use it as a way to network and connect with people who have similar interests.

The book is filled with stories, anecdotes and analogies that bring across the advice of a disciplined businessman who has achieved great results.

It’s an easy and fun read. The author has a fine sense of humor, which makes the book very entertaining.

Dig Your Well is about helping yourself by using your network to help others. It is about focusing more on being a person of substance and developing relationships before you need them. It has a powerful message and interesting examples of good networkers and their strategies, and can be useful to anyone.

It will give you the advice you need in order to become serious about building and developing useful relationships. You will learn what to do at events where everybody is a stranger and how to make more friends.

If you believe you lack the ability to network, or if you simply want an entertaining weekend read, full of good advice on becoming a better networker, this is the book for you.