“Everything I have worked through in life has been with someone important – a professional or personal support – at my side.  I believe life is meant to be lived with others – life is meant to be messy and meaningful when we creatively work through life’s situations together”.  This statement comes out of my book, Make Unstoppable Simple. That was written in 2015 and couldn’t be truer today! Now, more than ever, we need our “people” with us helping us get through hard times. 

My theory on a Relationship Strategy, goes something like this.  There are four categories in the relationship strategy as you look at your network of others: Inner Circle, Catalyst, Close, and Extended Community.  

Your Inner Circle – is made up of a close peer group of like-minded people with some of the same gifts and some very different gifts and talents. You should spend about 70 percent of your time on these relationships.

Your Catalyst Relationships – is a group of people what have both the mutual respect and the mutual intentions to support each other in endeavors. At any time, Catalysts may move into the Inner Circle once the level of trust is built. You should spend about 20 percent of your time on these relationships.

Your Close Community Relationships – is your biggest network, or groups with similar value-based political, social, charitable, or economic perspectives. This is the network we have probably missed the most in the pandemic. These are the large networking events and social settings that have been halted.

Your Extended Community Relationships – doesn’t know you as well as the other tiers. Think of your overall LinkedIn network and your 2nd or 3rd tier relationships. One day when you are able to walk back into a large networking event, you may see someone that looks familiar and discover that you are connected within the same social media networks. This would be an example of someone that’s out there in your Extended Community that could very well move into another category at some time.

You should spend about 10 percent of your time in the Close and Extended Community Relationship space, discovering who’s out there and who you want to get connected to.