I had lunch yesterday with the Relentless Networker. I learned a couple of things while enjoying my time with Paul.
- Do not order Tom Ka soup with noodles while networking. The noodles are very slurpy and messy to eat. At one point, I looked down and I had lovely coconut soup splatters on my sweater. Not my finest moment. Despite that, there were some jewels from the meeting.
- Coopertition. No, that is not a typo. Coopertition, according to the Urban Dictionary, is when two rival team up to help each other compete. I thank Paul for introducing me to the term.
An example of coopertition is when job seekers in the same field share leads, when competing restaurants advertise together for a special evening event, or when a leader in a field invites a competing leader in a field to speak at a conference.
Coopertition is hard. It takes faith in yourself, trust that your rival-cooperator will be fair and do the right thing, and it takes getting out there and sharing your expertise.
Since starting my own business, I’ve unkowningly tried to practice coopertition. Sharing contacts for networking, occasionally sharing my resources. But, I wonder if I were more deliberate in my effort and in my outreach what would happen.
Take a minute and brainstorm your coopertition opportunities. They might just surprise you.