Paul Allen has some useful advice:
I’m reading a book that Tim Sanders recommended, Never Eat Alone. The author claims that no one succeeds alone and that the key to success in business is generosity. He says the most important thing we do in business and in life is form relationships. Which is why I can’t understand how so many people meet so many other people and don’t exchange business cards or contact information. The author has a Palm with 5,000 people who will all return his calls. Life is about who you know. The richness of life comes from relationships. I didn’t figure this out until a couple years ago when I read Love is the Killer App and started thinking more about people than about how many hours of computer time I could fit in each day. After Never Eat Alone I’m going to read the Likeability Factor by Tim Sanders. And a friend of mine has written a book on relationships as well.
Big question: how do you teach that relationships matter most? When you interview someone for a job, do you ever ask how many solid relationships they have, or what experts they know, or how they build their social network?