Help me overcome Networking Resistance, please!

From the desk of Matt Page, MGIS.

Why are so many people whose jobs are not linked to networking or sales so reluctant to share their connections? Especially those close to you?

For example: I am currently looking for an MD with an Occupational Health certification in Ontario (and if you know anyone, please send them my way!). I know someone who is a physician, someone whom I’ve known for over 20 years, and I asked them if they would be willing to put me in touch with some of their colleagues who might either have the certification required, or know of someone who does. You know, classic networking stuff. And while they would trust me with their dogs, kids, etc., the look I received was as if I had asked for the moon.


Another example: Another long-time friend of mine works in a Government Department that has eluded my portfolio. They are well aware of what I do and have seen that I am considerably successful at it, as I’ve been doing this for over ten years. I ask if they would be willing to put me in touch with their team lead or manager – not a chance. I am the emergency contact for their kids, but no way are they comfortable with letting me talk to their boss.

What’s up?

Final example: Yet another long-time friend needed help writing their CV for a job they were eager to land. I was happy to lend a hand rewriting their CV (in my spare time), coaching them a little on the interview process, and helping them negotiate a better salary. After they get settled in and established, I ask them to help me connect with people within the company – sorry, not comfortable doing that.


These are people that want to see me succeed but are reluctant to tie their name to my work.

So, friends, how does one overcome such an obstacle? I obviously don’t want to put stress on personal relationships but at the same time, these people have great connections that would be valuable to myself and my career. I’m always happy to help friends and strangers alike connect and network – how can I get others to feel the same?

If anyone has found a way to overcome this obstacle, would love to hear about it!

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