Connections

About Connections, Kindness, Trust and Serendipity

I have been having this discussion several times with many Fintech folks.
Who you know defines who you are ? Partly true, certainly in a business context.
So, what’s the difference between someone’s network and another’s ?
Naturally, if you have an executive job, you have many opportunities to meet senior people and maybe even a chance to have an easy access to them.

Don’t you have the feeling that many of the “big” guys you know will simply disappear the day you don’t have that visible job anymore ?
This is because the relationship is based on a potentially mutually beneficial outcome and the moment it gets unbalanced it ceases to exist. It’s based on POWER.

POWER relationships always existed and always will and they can be really effective and powerful, of course. I am not interested in them, though, mainly because they look dry to me and in general intellectually poor.

I am more interested in TRUST, SERENDIPITY and EMPATHY relationships, that are agnostic to social status, based on openness and – simply – real.

Lazaro, my partner in FinTechStage and former boss boss’s boss to me as CEO of SWIFT, calls me a connector. The other day he said : “when you talk to someone, one of the first things you think of (and comes naturally) is : who should this person meet that I know and trust to help him/her to complement/advice/co-create ?”
In order to do this you need to be wired in certain way, because this connection of intents and of people has to happen in real time, and be effective, and is not simply  matching a banker with a banker (stupid example) but goes FAR beyond that.

What’s the result of being a connector ?
That you don’t ease connections on your own interest, but on the interest of the other person and you do it free (that is a big debate point, and I think I already wrote a post about “free advice”). It generates trust. It lasts.

There is something else, beside sharing connections, that defines someone as a Connector and this is almost your DNA. Being a connector is about being extrovert, for sure, but not specifically being social.

1) Maybe…
Is it related to IQ and usually same IQ people connects deeper and in am instinctive trust-based relationship

2) Maybe…
It is related to kindness, profound kindness. By kindness, for lack of a better definition, I’d say the deep desire to make the world a better place, as your life mantra. And you have this already as a kid.

Remember these kids trying to exclude you from the group by diminishing you publicly or simply playing arrogance as sign of power, versus these other kids always up for fun, smiling, and – simply – breathing kindness ? (Thinking of a story like this involving my son, and how difficult is to understand this difference when you are just a kid).

3) Maybe…
It is related to how hungry you are. (Wrote a post about this as well). The hungrier you are the better you align people and things to achieve your goals.

Anyway…
The goal of this post is to initiate a thinking process about interpersonal relationships, based on experience. Mind you, being a connector is not valued professionally or socially. Some confuses being a salesman with being a connector and the two have nothing to do together.

I need and want to understand more of it.

Stay tuned

Matteo

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