The Power of Human Connection - Part 1Jul 17, 2023
The Power of Human Connection – Part 1
by Vern Schellenger, CEO Contacts Count - 2023
Contacts Count is dedicated to help everyone we work with unleash the power of human connection in both their professional and personal life.
Chat GPT says: Overall, the power of human connection arises from a combination of: empathy, authenticity, active listening, shared values, mutual support, shared experiences, respect and acceptance, effective communication, emotional intelligence, and the investment of time and effort.
That’s a lot to unpack and may seem overwhelming at first. The Contacts Count approach to building trust-based mutually beneficial relationships involves many of these skills and behaviors. Here are some examples of what we do at Contacts Count that creates the possibility you will experience the power of human connection.
Networking is not about talking and taking. No one wants to feel they are being taken advantage of. Adopt a Positive Networker is the first competency for a reason – without authenticity there is no real relationship. Networking is about teaching and giving. The more I teach you about who I am the greater likelihood you can help me. And the more I learn about you the greater likelihood I can help you. Both parties are interested in learning about and helping each other. Genuine and authentic communication is crucial for fostering meaningful connections. When individuals can express their true selves without fear of judgment or rejection, it creates an environment of trust and openness.
Active listening is a difficult skill to master. Has your brain ever begun to create a response to what the other person is saying before they finished speaking? Guess what - you were not “listening”. The good news is you can learn to become better at active listening. It takes time, effort and feedback from others to help you get there.
When we have our first conversation with someone, we begin to learn a little bit about who they are and most likely what they do. Our inititial meetings are analogous to an iceberg – we see and learn about what we see above the waterline. We all know there is so much more we don’t know about this person underneath the waterline. If I am actively listening to what you are saying my facial expressions and body language give you a clue as to whether or not I am really listening. When I repeat something you said and/or ask you a question it let you know I am interested and I am listening. The best way to learn about others is to use open ended questions and as we say at Contacts Count “be seriously curious” about the other person. When people feel heard and understood, it strengthens the connection and enhances mutual understanding.
As two people engage in a number of conversations over time you learn more and more about each other - what each other likes, doesn’t like, what kind of work they do, what skills they have, their accomplishments, their challenges, where they like to go vacation, etc. As you teach me about who you are, there will almost invariably be a way I can help you. It might be a small gesture – sending you an article I know ou would be interested in, introducing you to others in my network that might help you in some way, referring you to a potential client, or maybe informing you of a new job that is perfect for you. And the list goes on...
Human connection thrives when individuals offer support and care for one another. When people feel supported, they are more likely to form strong connections and bonds with others
About the Author
Vern Schellenger, President and CEO of Contact Count.
Contacts Count is the premier coaching and training organization dedicated to helping you use the power of human connection to transform your career, business, and life.
Vern's focus it to empower professionals and entrepreneurs with the strategies, skills and tools to master networking (even if they are introverted and don’t like networking events). His vast experience includes such roles as HR VP and CLO at Dunkin Donuts, VP & Director of Professional Services at Lee Hecht Harrison, and SR VP of Human Resources at American Bankers Association.