The Chinese call it Guanxi, we call it having a Strong Network

I just had the opportunity to pick the brain of a very successful, high level Manager with an entertainment company in Paris-Guillaume Morel. Guillaume has been with his organization for close to 10 years, however, during his tenure with his company, he took 15 months off to travel to China and learn Chinese, as well as, to learn more about the Chinese culture. He gained many insights from living in China and learning about Chinese culture, but one of the most important things he learned about was Guanxi.

Guanxi describes a personal connection between two people in which one is able to prevail upon another to perform a favor or service, or be prevailed upon. Here we would call this networking. Guanxi is a central concept in Chinese society that is ingrained into their culture. Guanxi is used to develop and maintain strong client relationships and a competitive edge over the competition in business, however, the same business principles of Guanxi can also be applied to looking for a job. 

Having the support of a strong network can exponentially increase your effectiveness in both job hunting and in business. Building a network does not mean simply meeting people just to help you with a specific situation such as looking for a job. Building a network is a lifelong endeavor that will create a foundation for long term success and opportunities.

You will not be able to have sustainable success, however, if you do not have trust within the network. According to Guillaume Morel, to create trust in both business and job hunting situations, you must be transparent and sincere with the people in your network. It becomes clear very quickly if you are only out for personal gain. If instead, you create a symbiotic network, one that is reciprocal, you will readily create the results you desire.

Always remember that, while you may be able to have short term success on your own, long term success cannot be sustained alone. Guanxi is your source of the knowledge and resources that will create your personal success!