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Relationships First

Episode 4: Call it a clan. Call it a network. Call it a tribe.

October 25, 2018

Bill and Molly continue talking through Keith Ferazzi’s book, “Never Eat Alone” Part 1 about the importance of having a tribe. Reframe how you think about networks and business value.

Bill Risser: This is Bill.

Molly McKinley: And Molly McKinley and we're talking relationships.

Bill Risser: All kinds of relationships from starting new ones to nurturing existing ones over time.

Molly McKinley: And each week we'll highlight something that inspires ...

Bill Risser: Or triggers us ...

Molly McKinley: To help get to the root of why relationships are key to our happiness and success.

Bill Risser: Hey everybody, welcome to episode four of Relationships First. Molly and I are working our way through Kieth Ferrazzi's Never Eat Alone, a great book that talks about the power of networking, the power of connecting with people. And this quote we're gonna talk about today kinda dissected. Molly's got some interesting takes on this and I'm gonna try and figure out what she's saying. It's gonna be great. It's the way we work right? It's the yin and yang. It's the analytical guy and the yogi. Is that right? Can I call you a yogi, I've asked before?

Molly McKinley: Yeah. Yogi, yogini.

Bill Risser: All right, awesome.

Molly McKinley: Yogini actually technically accurate.

Bill Risser: Oh, I like that better, yogini. Okay, good.

Molly McKinley: It sounds like some sort of pasta but yes.

Bill Risser: It does. Yogini, yeah. Or a weird yogurt combination. Yogini yogurt maybe. Okay. I'll read the quote. I'll get out of this quickly. Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family, whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need you. And that's from Jane Howard. What does that say to you Molly?

Molly McKinley: It just speaks to the power of relationships and the power of networking. It's funny because I've often seen on Facebook people often get their feathers ruffled about the term tribe and just like, I don't like this term, it's exclusive, meaning exclusive and not inclusive. And I'm sensitive to that because I do always want to make sure I'm inclusive. But there is something about the notion of a tribe and your people that's real. Hopefully, my hope for everyone, is they have a sense of belonging and a sense of their people. And I think that this quote it speaks on a business perspective how important networks are but on a personal lever how important it is to feel belonging, we belong to something.

Bill Risser: Isn't it possible to have a tribe or a people and want to grow it?

Molly McKinley: 100%.

Bill Risser: Yeah and include more people into that. I don't really see a problem with that phrase.

Molly McKinley: Yeah I know. It's just something I'm sensitive because I've seen it over and over on Facebook, like I don't like the word tribe. I also don't have a negative association with it but because I've heard that and I've seen it, it's just something that I'm acutely aware of. But the power of your network really depends on the strength of your relationships. And your position in the network depends on the strength of the relationship and how well you know people and how often you're engaging. So this notion of tribe and tribe building it is an active one.

Bill Risser: How much time do you consciously put into this process? Or is something that just happens based on the type of person you are? I'll even stretch that out further and if someone's listening and they go, I don't even think I have a network, I don't even know what to do.

Molly McKinley: Yeah.

Bill Risser: I've thrown a lot atcha there.

Molly McKinley: For me, and I'm gonna have you answer this same question, is I spend about an hour every morning, this is my cup of coffee activity, and will get out, have my cup of coffee, I'll sit out on my porch and I will actively go through my social channels and my texts and reach out to people and I'm super intentional about it. It drives my wife crazy because she's like I wait up and your nose is in your phone but that is the time of day where I actually can completely focus. So maybe you could argue that I'm neglecting my inner most tribe right, by doing my intentional outer tribe building.

Bill Risser: Right.

Molly McKinley: I do acknowledge that. But it is super intentional and it is how I start every day but it's also ... It's just become a habit that I have formed professionally and I notice when I don't do it I feel like people share my stuff less and engage less on my posts. So I have seen actively and first hand the power of doing it.

Bill Risser: Yeah, for me I've really become a fan of contractually.

Molly McKinley: Yes.

Bill Risser: So I do-

Molly McKinley: You're not alone. People love-

Bill Risser: I know. I saw the big news this week with the hub and Tom Ferry and Zvi Band and congratulations to both of them I say.

Molly McKinley: Yeah.

Bill Risser: The ability for me to have buckets that are very specific to people that really are important in this space, that I know that I can make sure that I'm making those touches, so it's prompting me. But then much like you, I don't really have a full hour in the morning but there's definitely times of the day where I'm between meetings or I have this opportunity then just kind of just to dive in and see what's happening with those people that I rely on heavily for keeping me up to date or I'm relying on them for other personal reasons so I can, as you said, stay connected. In fact, I received some bad news this week from Facebook which is bumming me out, maybe a listener can help us, but they're actually doing away with Facebook lists, friend lists.

Molly McKinley: I know. Well actually that place, not to do a product pitch, but it does actually lay really nicely into what First is trying to do because when you aren't able to have your lists and your intentionality in terms of who to focus on you're back to the random activity and what First is all about is trying to bring a layer of data science on top of your network so that you can actually prioritize time based on data instead by by-lists or buckets or whatever that is. And there's no one right way of doing it but I'd say it's a yes and ... Especially folks who have very large networks, it's just really hard to sort of know where to go and where to spend that super precious time. But we were sort of joking a little bit around this idea of tribes and networks and I like to think of it as the Maven's and the monkey's.

Bill Risser: Yeah, what does that mean?

Molly McKinley: Well you have your Maven's who are just like natural networkers, right? This is sort of in their DNA-

Bill Risser: Do we wanna name people? Do you really wanna name people on maybe that work on both sides of that or are we just gonna let it go?

Molly McKinley: Well I mean I think the master networker and the maven in real estate is Debra Trappen.

Bill Risser: Okay. I like that choice.

Molly McKinley: And she's ... Yeah, she's amazing and is deeply connected and committed to her people. And it has opened up a lot of doors for women in real estate and it's pretty amazing actually to see her in motion and I would absolutely say she's a maven. And the monkey, the reason why I say that is because in the monkey society the matriarch, or the person in the highest position is the person who grooms the most, right? And so, it's a really nice metaphor, right? Because the person who's grooming and connecting and nurturing and loving their network the most are also the people who rise to the top. That is just social science there. It's not-

Bill Risser: I have a candidate for that role.

Molly McKinley: Oh my gosh.

Bill Risser: So I'm gonna throw it out there, give me your thought on this one. How about Jeff Chalmers up in Boston?

Molly McKinley: You know it's so funny that you say that because I just met Jeff for the first time in person. Actually your buddy, Sean Carpenter mentioned to me that Jeff is somebody that I absolutely should know because he's a master teacher about relationships and relationship building and he did not disappoint. So I met him in San Francisco when we were at Inman and it was lovely.

Bill Risser: Yes. I can't wait to let him know that on a podcast that will be released soon, because as we record these they're not out yet. I wanna tell him we're calling him a monkey. It's awesome. I can't wait.

Molly McKinley: He said the master groomer, I love it.

Bill Risser: Yeah. Absolutely he'll eat it up. But I love that, I love that way of thinking about it, right?, so thank you for clearing that up, now it makes sense.

Molly McKinley: Well yeah, there you go. I'm gonna throw something at you.

Bill Risser: Okay.

Molly McKinley: So in terms of tribes and the power in your position within a tribe, right? What do you think in terms of position somebody as more important or not within the tribe, right? Because all the tribes have rankings essentially. Is it just engagement? I have some ideas.

Bill Risser: I know for me, I can only talk about me personally, right? This is a very ... I think this is a kind of a ... Everybody can have a completely different answer to this question and what-

Molly McKinley: As is all things in life.

Bill Risser: There's the yogini again.

Molly McKinley: Yes. The lens in which we see the world.

Bill Risser: And for me the people that I look to as powerful and leaders are really are the thought leaders as well. Very deep thinkers, very bright people. And everyone's bright in a certain way, they have their own things. For me, because I met him early early in the game, back in 2009 or 10, but for me Jeff Turner is somebody that I look to as a leader in this space that we're in, with the way that he analyzes and processes information differently, definitely differently than I do. And so, that's the kind of thing I'm looking for. And I'll give you another one right now for me, it's Marc Davison, Brian Boero, those guys at 1,000 Watt are amazing. And what they've created there definitely lends the credence and the power of what they're doing, right? So I guess that's the way I look at it. You're probably going a different way.

Molly McKinley: Well no, I think it's really interesting. Again, I'm putting on my old timey PR hat, right? And there's ... Being in a position to make things happen is also I think sort of helps with your tribe building. So it's one thing if you can have the conversation, it's another if you can open doors and I think that either access to people who are decision makers, access to people you otherwise would not have access to and then the authority to do something about it, to me are sort of all wrapped up into this idea of tribal clout. And can you earn those things? 100%. That doesn't mean that you have to be the CEO or an executive position, but that's again, the power of your network and the power of people being able to help you because you've helped them along the way, right?

Bill Risser: Yeah.

Molly McKinley: This is where it starts to add up into the position of oh, okay, I'm starting to understand that the more people that I help the wider my network gets, the more I'm able to follow through and open doors for other people inside and outside of industries, so again, that breath of network is really where it all starts to compound and where you can build businesses from networks. Does that make sense?

Bill Risser: Oh, totally. You're taking it right back to the book, right? Ferrazzi talks at length about that. The ability to build that network before you need it.

Molly McKinley: Yes.

Bill Risser: You don't sit there and say I need another one of these in my network because I might need that down the road. That's not the way you look at it. You continually are looking for opportunities to connect with people that you have an opportunity to help and so it just continues. And like you said, getting outside of your industry and making it even broader only helps down the road. So yeah, I think that's a great way of looking at it, door openers, I love that right. Because that's ultimately what you're doing for someone and then the way the world works is they're gonna turn around somewhere down the road when you need it the most and do the same for you.

Molly McKinley: It is and it all goes down to sort of those deep rooted connections, people that you know best and that's the trickiest part for I think most people is when you have very small ... A small group of people that you know very very well and then a lot of sort of likes or like friends but not true friends and that is not what we're talking about.

Bill Risser: Right, nope.

Molly McKinley: We're not talking about just soft connections, we're talking about shred value, we're talking about deep expertise, people know where your knowledge base ... What your knowledge base actually is and how you can be an active participant, that's I think is where the magic happens. And knowing enough people and what they are about that you can leverage it. For anybody who's sitting out there and who's like oh my gosh, why do I even like people? How am I ever supposed to build relationships if I don't even ... That seems like a lot of work. I guess for some people it's natural and for others it's gonna have to be really intentional.

Bill Risser: Well Molly, our takeaway from episode four is ...

Molly McKinley: I don't know, what is it?

Bill Risser: No, I think look ... I think you wrapped it up in just that last sentence before I jumped in on there and that is, that you have to be intentional, right? We've used that word with listening, we're now using the word intentional with connecting, I think the word intentional applies to relationships not only in our personal lives but in our professional lives. So, yeah I think it's being intentional and making sure that you got to have a network, call it a tribe, call it a clan, whatever it is, you've got to have that protective layer that's there for you when you need it and you're there to help them when they need it.

Molly McKinley: And I love that Bill, I love that idea of the protective layer, I think that's beautiful.

Bill Risser: Awesome. Well thank you so much for checking us out on episode four. And Molly, I know we like to preview our next episode so what do we have coming up for episode five?

Molly McKinley: So Bill, for episode five let's talk about relationships as it relates to seasons and the changes of season as we come into fall.

Bill Risser: Seasons like the NFL season?

Molly McKinley: Well, I wasn't really thinking that but of course you have to weave in your sports so okay.