Found this dialogue on and since I’d been hearing some similar networking questions, I thought I’d post it here.

On Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2005, as part of Big Help week, networking expert Diane Danielson talked to readers about making the right business contacts.

I am sampling some of the questions and answers here, but it would make sense to go read the complete article on their website here:

rich: Q: Should I try and keep up with a former boss with whom I did not get along? Is that a good network contact for me?
Diane_Danielson: Generally speaking, I apply the “airplane test” for networking. I don’t network with anyone I wouldn’t want to sit next to on a cross-country airplane flight.
Diane_Danielson: If you don’t “click” for whatever reason, you’re both on edge and wary of what the other person wants.

rich: Q: Supposing I have not spoken with a college classmate for 25 years or so – can I still pick up the phone and call?
Diane_Danielson: By all means, yes! Who doesn’t love getting that unexpected call.
Diane_Danielson: Just lead with whatever it was that sparked your memory – ran into another old classmate, recalled that you were in the health care industry, etc.

mjc_1001: Q: Diane, how can a small IT outsourcing company attract new business? Are there recruiting companies out there that recruit business to business opportunities?
Diane_Danielson: Part of networking is “networking for information” I would try to go to organizations like a Chamber of Commerce and ask just that question.

And lots more questions from networkers who want to learn some more! Go here for the full article.