Your Network Is Your Networth
When he’s not making millions and adding to his $100m estimated worth, Ugandan business mogul and entrepreneur Patrick Bitature is talking to youths and mentoring upcoming entrepreneurs whenever he gets a chance and one thing he always emphasizes is; “Your Network is Your Networth”
For some reason, this line has stuck with me in the hustle, it has been by my side as I venture into the freelance life and it has taught me to learn how to appreciate people around me and make sure there is a level of value in whatever relationship — because your net-worth, in this case, are the people.
A freelancer’s work thrives so much on self-promotion & heavily relies on referrals too. One has to always network and create as many links and connections to always keep afloat in the business and the only way is to keep having business allies, friends, acquaintances that will link you to more business opportunities for yourself.
I never want to be selfish in my life and this is mainly attributed to the fact that I’m where I am today because of sharing with people I barely know and this has, in turn, brought me opportunities from people that were once strangers.
Today, from the strangest of places, I want to meet new people and make them my friends. Much as I don’t know anyone, I want to always strive as much to meet new people, understand them, connect with them and if I fail, I’ve promised myself to try a little harder.
If you must build your network, you honestly need to be straight-forward with the kind of relationships you are building. Don’t promise what you can’t give all in the name of getting a deal or a gig. Stick to the plan, offer what you can afford to avoid creating mistrust which may taint your relationship.
When you are honest enough and the foundation of your relationship with the people you work with is built on trust, then you will see yourself grow well in your hustle with minimal or no glitches at all. This will help you keep afloat in your freelance work.
I must admit though, In the freelance kind of work, one thing I have always come to terms with is that people are hard to deal with and are easily sentimental or ‘triggered’. This is a common thing especially if you are dealing with emotional and sensitive peeps. You need to be sure you are always on the right side of the coin of your potential customers.
Although, I won’t refute that clients can really mean to be annoying at times and I understand that is the commonest characteristic with most bosses. However, I refuse to believe that you should settle for such just because you need to get paid for the gig anyway. Stand up for yourself, your relationship should be clear and certain things beyond respect for each other should be absolutely clear if you are to work together.
My friend has always told me the analogy of keeping your head down and simply minding your business and doing your work. Nothing more and nothing less and this helps you stay away from whatever clashes that may occur. Apply it, it may work.
That said, you need to always keep the grip on your network, don’t lose sight of the people that might link you to other people that will bring in the business. Always grow it, nurture it and do everything there is to keep it at bay