What is Guerrilla Networking?

by Dr. Monroe Mann, PhD, Esq, MBA, LLM, ME

I talk about this in depth in my book of the same name, but let me break down the basics for you.

Most people have heard of networking as a concept. In most cases, it's all about 'meeting people'. I call this traditional networking. You print up business cards. You go to a party. You hand them out to everyone you meet. How effective is that really?

Then there's a concept I came up with called Guerrilla Networking. It turns traditional networking on its head: instead of trying to meet people, you become the type of person other people want to meet.

It sounds quite obvious, right? And yet, so few people actively put the principle into action.

Let's go back to that party for a moment. Now, instead of you handing out your business cards to everyone, the tables are turned: now everyone is giving you THEIR business cards!

Doesn't that make so much more sense?

"Oh so you just want me to become famous?!" you scream.

Not necessarily. All you need to do is be the person those other people want to meet. And while that may initially sound like a daunting task, I assure you it's not, with patience, persistence, and creativity.

Here are some examples of how it would work:

  1. Be the talent agent at a gathering of actors.
  2. Be the investor at a gathering of filmmakers.
  3. Be the survivor at a gathering of people struggling through a life event.
  4. Be the success story at a gathering of those who are still trying.
  5. Be the one person who can code at a gathering of entrepreneurs trying to launch a new app.

Those are just stark examples. The concept applies across the board: decide who you want to meet, and then figure out what type of people these individuals want to meet. Spielberg doesn't want to meet a new actor or wannabe filmmaker who knocks on his door; but I bet he would be far more likely to want to meet an Oscar nominee, a tech millionaire, or a filmmaker who just received amazing reviews for her/her latest film. Right?

Maybe you're still thinking, "But those things are so specific! And it will take me ages to become that type of 'expert' and 'success story'!" Well, better to figure this out now, instead of 5 years from now, right? And let it be a wake up call to... GET OFF YOUR ASS!

If you take action now and start making the moves today that will turn you into that 'awesomely attractive' person in five years, doesn't it make sense to do so?

Everyone wants a quick fix. And everyone wants to be 'discovered' magically today without having to do much. For some people, it just happens, and I'm sure it's a wild roller coaster of a ride. For most of us, we are not going to be magically 'discovered'.

So we need to work our butts off to become that person that does get discovered, And yes, it's probably going to take years and years of hard work. That is guerrilla networking: become so successful and/or unique and/or fascinating that everyone you want to meet jumps through hoops in their efforts to meet you.

Now that's efficiency. And that is what will do more for your success than just trying to meet people. If people spent more time trying to become successful instead of trying to meet successful people, it's amazing what would be accomplished.

I hope you will start, today, to transform yourself into a guerrill networker. And to read more, check out the full book, "Guerrilla Networking", co-written with Jay Conrad Levinson, that provides a step by step plan on how to do this, and countless examples of how others did too.

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