I’m working on expand my network and improve my social skill, and would be happy to get some input on how to build and expand my network(I’m living ad traveling in Denmark and Germany). 

I have heard a lot of podcast, and wonder which differences that are between contacting people in US and EU, and if the social techniques that carrier tools suggest, also is valid in EU? (Think of the podcast “Building a network”, “How to polite become a part of a group” and “How To Engage Your Seatmate”) 
I have started to contact people in my network every 3-4 month. Some which I had regular contact with before, but not so often, and other which I have not spoken with since I last change job 1,5 year ago. The results are very mixed.
Is someone doing the same?
And do you have tips to contact contacts that have gone “cold”?
Have anybody in Northern Europe experiences with the techniques CT suggest to come in contact with strangers on airplane or at conferences/other work-social-event? Until now I did not have the opportunity to test it myself.

brew752's picture


I also tried to keep my network alive when I changed job, country and industry about a year and a half ago from England to Scotland. My experience was that maybe only 1 or 2 in ten people in my network kept in touch and this was usually because they moved to the same area or industry as me. 

I am not the best person about to keep in touch with people as I find small talk a bit of a drag but it is something I am trying to improve on. I have tried a few techniques from CT and have mixed results, it probably depends on who you talk to and if they want to chat back. I did try and chat to a man from Ukraine in the airport last week and got a 20 minute rant about how his country is going wrong, that put me off a bit and I suppose I will never see him again so it doesn't matter.

Tips I have used in the past is to call or text and say I was just chatting to someone about them and wanted to see how they are doing. I also find facebook really good to keep in touch as much as Mark and Mike are not in favour of it.

I have also found that my old workmates only get in touch if they want something and once they have it or realise I cant help I hear nothing else.



 Good judgement comes from experience, experience comes from bad judgement.  

KimWaldmann's picture

Okay somewhat the same experience as I have. 
I have also used the tips with say, I just talk about you or thought about because a colleague did/said …… Then it is also easier to get small talk going.  
I will just keep trying, learning and adapting, and will see how far it will bring me :-)

Sulmi's picture

Hi Phil,

I live in Finland. My experience is that the network guidance from M&M is excellent. I have used the 3 questions on plans countless times and got a good response rate. Also, I noticed that people are happy if someone is leading them in a conversation - it might relax an akward situation. People seem to appreciate keeping in touch in Finland as well as anywhere else.


Some other guidance I have found rather US specific:

1. Go to work sick. This is considered highly unethical in the place I work - especially as everyone could work from home.

2. The original  feedback format is perceived as rather stiff (I understand that guidance has been updated, seems more realistic to me now) . I alternate the formulations, but I keep the basic elements.


Hope that helped.