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Welcome to our new spotlight series, where we introduce you to some of the incredible authors on the SocialTalent learning platform. With over 100 experts delivering quality content on all areas of workplace excellence, we pride ourselves on having a faculty that are not only heavily experienced in their respective fields, but are also engaging instructors from a diverse set of backgrounds.
Today, we’re going to meet Kingsley Aikins. Founder & CEO The Networking Institute, Kingsley is renowned for his ability to show professional business people how to survive and thrive by building strong and diverse networks.
Q. Can you give us some background information about your experience and history within this field?
I worked for 8 years as the Sydney based representative of Enterprise Ireland and IDA Ireland and then was Worldwide CEO of The Ireland Funds for 17 years mostly based in Boston. In both these roles I came to appreciate the importance of networking and a realization that to survive and thrive you need to develop a strong and diverse network. In Australia I founded the Lansdowne Club for Irish business executives based there and The Ireland Funds was a global network of the Irish Diaspora active in 50 cities in 13 countries.
Q. Can you give us a detailed overview of what your content covers?
My SocialTalent content focuses on the importance of networking and how to go about creating a strong and diverse network. It set out a precise 4-step process on how to build and maintain your network and the particular skills needed to excel at it. Whether you’re an employee, new manager, or seasoned leader, there are unique missions on the platform that provide the technical skills needed to network like a pro.
Q. Why is this an important topic of study right now?
The hidden cost of COVID and remote/hybrid work is that we all tended to hunker down with family, friends, and just a few business contacts – the inner concentric ring of our network where we have strong emotional ties and we have not focused on the outer concentric ring where we have a lot of weak ties. Accordingly, there is less business development, less learning on the job, less randomness and serendipity and less company loyalty and company culture. The challenge now is to get back out networking, to refresh our existing networks and to build new ones.
Q. What do you hope learners will gain from doing these missions? What problems do they solve?
I hope learners will appreciate how critically important networking is for their own career development and that there is a process to networking and if you follow the process you have a greater chance of success than if you don’t. Research shows that the number one predictor of career success is being in an open network so building a strong and diverse network is not just good for your company, but it is good for you as an individual. People who have strong and diverse networks live longer, are stronger physically and mentally, earn more money, and are happier. It’s a no-brainer!
Q. Where can people find you?
Interested to see how Kingsley’s content could help your team? Get in-touch with SocialTalent today.
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