When I click through my emails and see random invitations from former colleagues to reconnect through Linked In and what seems like trillions of other social and business networking sites, I feel A.) Guity when I ignore them or B.) Ridiculous when I accept them and subsequently ignore the people who sent them.
Somehow, I’ve managed to get through almost 63 years and network my own way–in person and on the phone. I think of networking as far more than clicking an accept button on a computer.
Sure, it’s nice to see a name from the past belonging to someone you really adored, like Mitch. We worked together as young reporters 30 years ago and we’d stay late most every night, critiquing each other’s copy.
Mitch and I lost touch (life has a way of getting in the way), but I’ve thought of him over the years and accepted his Linked In invitation right away. After a flurry of e-mails back and forth, I realized I don’t have time right now to fit Mitch back into my life, as much as that would probably be a wonderful experience.
What I had with Mitch will stay with me forever. Those late-night sessions had a far greater impact than any e-mail exchange could ever have.
Maybe Mitch and I will see one another some day, perhaps when i don’t have to spend time opening e-mail invitations.
I love you Mitch, but FOF women still prefer to network the old-fashioned way, face to face.