There are many times when I pause to reflect on the power of one connection and how it’s forever-altered my trajectory.
Walking into a boutique in college turned into a job, which catapulted me into a career in fashion (as well as a deep friendship with the store owner). An introduction for a lunch meeting turned me into a writer, which ultimately led me to this Forbes column. A woman I met in my college sorority was the catalyst for the genesis of my second company. An introduction to go on a retreat turned into a lot of wonderful outcomes, one of which was meeting my beloved partner.
How about for you? Who is that one person whose introduction to you changed your life?
In a time where we are more connected than ever, we’re oddly the loneliest and most disconnected. I’ve found that so many mistake connection for transactions; people hope that each person they meet will help get them to where they want to go. However, they have little regard for the other person’s aims, let alone looking at them as the potential for a long-term relationship or someone from whom they could learn something.
Because of this, I set out to find stories of people who had one connection change the course of their lives, in ways big and small. So, I turned to Bumble Bizz to speak with their users.
You may be familiar with Bumble as a dating app. After hearing from their users that they wanted a new way to network because traditional networking can feel antiquated (hard to access, uncomfortable, and time-consuming), they created a swipe-based networking platform where users can connect with other nearby professionals to network, find a mentor, or meet up for coffee. And, if you’re worried about being mistaken for dating, you can turn that portion of the app off!
My hope is that these stories inspire you to be curious about your interactions. When in doubt, remember these examples of how common career challenges can be turned around by one connection.