Never Eat Alone Quotes: Level Up Your Networking

This article is an excerpt from the Shortform book guide to "Never Eat Alone" by Keith Ferrazzi. Shortform has the world's best summaries and analyses of books you should be reading.

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Are you looking for Never Eat Alone quotes? What do they teach about networking?

In Never Eat Alone, entrepreneur Keith Ferrazzi discusses how to develop fulfilling and mutually beneficial professional relationships: in other words, how to network. The following Never Eat Alone quotes discuss some of his key ideas about networking and professional relationship building.

Keep reading for Keith’s Ferrazzi’s Never Eat Alone quotes.

Never Eat Alone Quotes by Keith Ferrazzi

“Match your goals with the people who can make them happen and start building the relationships.”

According to Ferrazzi, your networking efforts should be informed by specific, clearly defined goals. Defining your goals will help you identify what kind of people to network with. For example, a passionate and skilled public speaker could set the goal of becoming a media spokesperson. Naturally, it would make sense to network with people who can provide this opportunity.

Once you’ve identified your goals, the next step is to make what Ferrazzi calls a “Relationship Action Plan” (RAP). This is a written plan that details how you plan to achieve those goals as well as who should be in your professional circle to help you get there.

“It’s better to give before you receive. And never keep score. If your interactions are ruled by generosity, your rewards will follow suit.”

Reciprocity is the first and foremost of Ferrazzi’s networking principles. When seeking to connect with someone, don’t just think about what they can give you, but also what you can give them. If you take a lot from your connections without giving anything back, you’ll gain a reputation for being selfish and taking advantage of people. 

An essential element of developing reciprocal relationships is giving to other people simply because you want to help them—not because you expect something in return. If you don’t do this, you may fall into the trap of “keeping score”: closely monitoring how many favors you’ve given to and received from a person. You may even refuse to help others if they don’t immediately offer something to you to “even the score.” Withholding assistance in this way will severely harm your relationships, as it demonstrates to people that your motivations for helping them are only selfish. 

“Audacity was often the only thing that separated two equally talented men and their job titles.” 

In a networking context, “audacity” means being bold enough to network with total strangers. If you limit yourself to networking only with people you’re already somewhat familiar with, you shut yourself off from the opportunities and insights that strangers can provide. 

One of Ferrazzi’s greatest networking successes came from boldly introducing himself to a stranger at the World Economic Forum, back when he was an unknown businessman. That stranger happened to be Phil Knight, the founder of Nike. While Ferrazzi and Knight didn’t speak for long, the former’s audacity made an impression on the latter. Later, when Ferrazzi set up his media and marketing company, Knight became one of his first high-profile customers. 

Never Eat Alone Quotes: Level Up Your Networking

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  • How to build and maintain a successful professional network
  • The 4 key strategies to building up a network
  • Why you have to put in work to keep your network relationships strong

Darya Sinusoid

Darya’s love for reading started with fantasy novels (The LOTR trilogy is still her all-time-favorite). Growing up, however, she found herself transitioning to non-fiction, psychological, and self-help books. She has a degree in Psychology and a deep passion for the subject. She likes reading research-informed books that distill the workings of the human brain/mind/consciousness and thinking of ways to apply the insights to her own life. Some of her favorites include Thinking, Fast and Slow, How We Decide, and The Wisdom of the Enneagram.

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