-part of the N4L Series; celebrating Learning at Work Week-
It’s my great pleasure to introduce Martin Smithers…
I like to see people succeed whatever the odds, if I can help them then I will! I have travelled to many places and met lots of different people.
What networked for learning means to me
‘Networked for learning’ began for me when I attend events through work, social events and to give moral support to friends or colleagues. This started my learning network and friendships.
Now, I look at these occasions as an opportunity to meet and talk about everything and anything with a group of people that I have bonded with. I always go along ready to listen and learn. I hear many different views and stories, and, as my network has got bigger, the more valuable it’s become.
Networking for me professionally was hard at first but then I got to see some of the same people and a real connection took place. This made me contact them and ask if they were attending an event I was going to. From this my network grew and has become a vast source of information and knowledge at my fingertips.
I am not afraid to reach out to them when I know they can help. It works both ways and I am always willing to help my network or introduce them to others who could help them.
Remember to listen when someone is talking about something they or their company are looking for, think about your great network of people and say “I know someone who might be able to help you”. Don’t just walk away!
My personal learning insights
I have learnt that my network grows by paying attention. While I was getting my haircut I was listening to someone who needed help in a certain area. I am now helping them and, as a consequence, my network may well be involved in certain aspects of this new business.
People always say you need to be in the right place at the right time. I add to this, you need to be listening and engaged with your network otherwise the opportunities don’t arise.
In the era of mobile phones and the internet we have a wealth of learning material but not if you don’t listen, engage and reach out!
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