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"They say it's all about whom you know. Here's how to know them." Part two.

Paul Buscemi's Column for Monday June 25, 2001. Buscemiarts@hotmail.com

Last week I introduced you to this "industry relationship building" course I have been taking. The class has featured many great ideas and techniques for strengthening and creating industry relationships. (See June 18th column for the details.) Just being in the course has been a great inspiration for me to get out there and meet more people and build on the industry relationships I already have.

Last week's class was led by Producer, Ross Bell (Fight Club, Under Suspicion. See April 16th column). I want to share some of the ideas he expressed with you here. I also want to let you know how I have opened doors for myself by taking a class, or going to a seminar. As writer's who are launching their careers - we cannot have too many launch sites! The more people we know, the more options we have. The more chances of finding that person who want to buy our work or at least are impressed enough to keep an eye on our progress. To achieve this end. To nurture productive industry relationships Bell had these suggestions (selected highlights I'm paraphrasing from my notes):

1. Honesty is important in relationships. It humanizes you and provides a better connection between you and others.

2. Maintaining the relationship is the greatest challenge. If you engage in relationships with people you would like to work with over the long term - people you respect - then the maintenance will be easy.

3. Try to take your relationships to the next level beyond idle chitchat. Know the other person's goals and concentrate on helping them achieve those goals.

4. You may not get paid for everything you do. Be patient. The rewards will come later.

5. Building relationships is what life is all about. Everything that happens within the relationship is a building block to strengthen it.

For myself, I have had great fortune this year by following what I call the Karma-Method. I forgo my needs. In conversation, I try to find solutions to any problems or obstacles the other person might be facing in building their career. I find it liberating to forget about my own career objectives momentarily to focus on the needs of others. My suggestions or advice are usually not only welcome - but helpful. This grateful other person's next comment is usually something like this: "What are you working on..." That's Karma in my book. The energy you put out - comes back to you. More about the Karma Method, Ross Bell's lecture and the power of Free-bees...next week.



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