Porter Gale’s Funnel Test is based on the premise that, in order to expand your network in the right ways, you need to be clear on your purpose.
Articulate your passions
Start by taking a few minutes to articulate your top 3 passions. To get started, consider:
Some examples are: art, children, photography, architecture, kayaking, traveling, and inventing.
What do you enjoy doing?
How do you spend your free time?
If you had more time, how would you spend it?
Connect with people with shared passions
For each passion, list two activities that will help you improve your skills in that area. For example, if you enjoy dancing, you might write “take a Salsa class once a month.” Commit to these activities.
The better and more involved you are with your passions, the easier it is to connect with others who share them.
Define your purpose to focus your networking
With your main passions in mind, establish your tone. This should be a combination of your authentic self and how you’d like others to perceive you. Examples of tone include generous, honest, rigorous, caring, confident, and competitive.
Now that you have chosen one or two words to describe yourself, write a twenty-word purpose. This will help you focus your actions. To spark your thinking, ask yourself what you really want to accomplish.
With your answer in mind, who should you be talking to and how can you connect with them?
For a lot more on building your network, check out the rest of Porter Gale’s excellent book on networking.