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Sunday, March 01, 2009


Beyond Networking: Being with Ron Sukenick

Ron's section is sponsored by

Strategy Ten
Shorten Learning Curves: Move Into Dream Fulfillment

As you might guess, from reading my column over the years, my book project with Jane surges has provided numerous opportunities for Jane and me to apply each of these strategies to our partnership. This strategy, shortening learning curves, has proven to be a particular catalyst to fuel us forward.

We realized over lunch after a racquetball game that we both were passionate about relationships and relationship success. My writings about networking and my passion about another level beyond what is happening in the mainstream complemented well with Jane’s writings and passion around helping people hold a relationship vision that opens the possibility of co-creation and partnership. Within 30 minutes, we identified an overlapping purpose and this book partnership was launched. Within a short eight months, it was finished. How do two people who do not know each other very well come together and join forces toward this kind of project or any other? We would like to say, from our experience—not just this one but many others, it is through shortening the learning curve. Following are two graphics. One illustrates a long learning curve where side roads are taken as individuals lose track of the project vision.

This is contrasted to a shortened learning curve that focuses on finding common ground. When we focus on common ground and what is most important in a given moment, we keep the bigger picture of our purpose and intentions before us. We work straight ahead—using direct communication and staying mindful of the context. Trusting that the other has our best interest in mind, we move ahead at a pace fueled with positive energy. See if you can picture this for yourself.

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Long Learning Curve:

Short Learning Curve:

To help shorten the learning curve, there may be issues you are facing. Following are questions for your consideration. Think about one of your personal or business partners. Respond to the following questions:

What project emerged between the two of you?
What problems, issues, needs or opportunities can the two of you respond to and address together?
What resources, information, time frame will support your project?
Who will be impacted by this project, and how will they be affected? How might they be involved in the project?
How will you know if you are individually and jointly successful?
What adjustments need to be made as you move forward toward project completion (dream fulfillment)?
How do your channels of communication support your project and shorten the learning curve? (i.e. email, voice mail, direct communication, talking about prior experiences or learning curves.)
Are you looking out for each other as well as your joint interests throughout this process? If not, what improvements need to be made?
What challenges are you currently facing (financial, communication, resources, etc.?)

What steps taken together would move you more expediently and more closely to project completion?

Scenario Planning

There are times for extensive market studies and long term plans. During those times, by all means incorporate a longer approach to moving toward a joint collaborative effort.

Scenario planning will help you move much more quickly and may be just what you need for the joint project at hand. Write a brief case study with the objective and with as many variables that you can think of. Balance your optimistic thoughts with opposite possibilities to make sure that you are encompassing all possible contingencies. Include as much of the “unpredictable” as possible—again include what can go right, and what can go wrong. Then discuss the scenario and how you might deal with challenges that might arise.

What action steps will you take? Add these steps to your calendar right now.


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The Emergence of The Relationship Economy

The Emergence of The Relationship Economy
The Emergence of the Relationship Economy features TNNWC Founder, Adam J. Kovitz as a contributing author and contains some of his early work on The Laws of Relationship Capital. The book is available in hardcopy and e-book formats. With a forward written by Doc Searls (of Cluetrain Manifesto fame), it is considered a "must read" for anyone responsible for the strategic direction of their business. If you would like to purchase your own copy, please click the image above.


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