Ep 71. David Burkus: Friend of a Friend - Work and Life with Stew Friedman
David Burkus is a best-selling author and associate professor of leadership and innovation at Oral Roberts University. His latest book, Friend of a Friend: Understanding the Hidden Networks That Can Transform Your Life and Your Career, offers a new perspective on how to grow networks and build key connections—one based on the science of human behavior, not rote networking advice. His TED talk has been viewed over 1.8 million times and he is a regular contributor to Harvard Business Review.
Stew and David talk about how most people find networking and mixers uncomfortable at best; networking can make people feel actually dirty. David has reviewed and distilled the research literature on social capital and he offers something other than the cookie-cutter advice that can feel inauthentic. He recommends exploring the edges of one’s hidden or neglected network -- one’s weak and dormant ties -- and getting to know people in multifaceted ways by being genuinely curious about their lives rather than by pursuing purely instrumental, career-related questions. They discuss methods and tools for cultivating networks of support, including Contactually, which David uses to let him know when he has not contacted someone. Check out Stew’s earlier conversation with David about his previous book, Under New Management.