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Learn from Herminia Ibarra is the Charles Handy Visiting Professor of Organizational Behavior at London Business School and the Cora Chaired Professor of Leadership and Learning at INSEAD. Check out how to step out of the business card slingfest and into strategically networking, as presented during a Lean In Lunch Bunch Circle.
Building Effective Networks
Learn how to build a strategic network that benefits you,
your organization, and your contacts
By Herminia Ibarra, Professor of Organizational Behavior, INSEAD Business School
Presented by Denise Reed
Meet the expert
Herminia Ibarra is the Charles Handy Visiting Professor of Organizational
Behavior at London Business School and the Cora Chaired Professor of
Leadership and Learning at INSEAD. Prior to joining INSEAD she served
on the Harvard Business School faculty for 13 years. She is a judge for
the Financial Times/McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award and a
member of the World Economic Forum’s Expert Network. Thinkers 50
ranked Ibarra #8 among the most influential management thinkers in the
world. She received her M.A. and Ph.D. from Yale University, where she
was a National Science Fellow.
Professor Ibarra is an expert on leadership development. Her best-selling
book, Working Identity: Unconventional Strategies for Reinventing Your
Career describes how people reinvent their careers. Author of numerous
articles in top academic journals, Ibarra also writes for business
publications including the Harvard Business Review, Financial Times,
Wall Street Journal, and New York Times, and speaks internationally on
leadership and talent management.
THERE ARE THREE KINDS OF NETWORKS:
● Operational — relationships with people at work that allow you to get
today’s work done
● Personal — relationships of your choosing, people you like to hang out
● Strategic — (most important network for career advancement)
relationships that help you envision your future, sell your ideas, and get
the information and resources you need
● What do your networks currently look like?
● Do you have mostly “just like me” convenience networks?
● Do you have valuable “weak ties” in your network?
● What challenges do you face when cultivating your networks?
● How might you address these challenges?
GREAT STRATEGIC NETWORKS ARE:
● Broad — connected to a diverse range of people.
● Connective — linked or bridged across people and groups that would
not otherwise connect.
● Dynamic — responsive and adaptive, growing as you grow. Building a
strong strategic network is challenging for anybody but it can be
particularly challenging for women, especially in male-dominated
organizations and fields.
● What are the strengths of your current networks?
What challenges are you facing?
● What, if anything, holds you back from forming the kinds of networks
you would like to have?
● Mention which strategies could help you navigate these challenges?
STRATEGIES FOR BUILDING EFFECTIVE
● Engage in activities both inside and outside your organization.
● Connect through people you already know.
● Focus on and develop the value you bring to your network.
● Prioritize and invest in a few activities — favor active over passive
Pick One Action
Imagine who, what, where, and when it will happen.
What one step can you take to build a more effective