100 episodes

Welcome to the Social Capital Podcast, where we dive into social relationships and how the investment you put into them establishes trust, reciprocity, and value within your network and community.

Our host, Lori Highby, will connect with top professionals and dive into their best networking stories and techniques to share with you!

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Welcome to the Social Capital Podcast, where we dive into social relationships and how the investment you put into them establishes trust, reciprocity, and value within your network and community.

Our host, Lori Highby, will connect with top professionals and dive into their best networking stories and techniques to share with you!

    199: Find someplace to volunteer - with Frank Agin

    199: Find someplace to volunteer - with Frank Agin

    About Frank Agin He is the president of AmSpirit Business Connections, which empowers entrepreneurs and professionals to become more successful via networking. In addition, he works with companies and organizations with their professional relationships. He's also the host of Networking Rx Podcast, which has ideas, insights, and interviews on business networking. Finally, Frank is the author of several books, including Foundational Networking: Building Know, Like and Trust to Create a Lifetime of Extraordinary Success.
     
    What is the best thing that someone can do to jumpstart their network? “Find someplace to volunteer. It just makes it really easy. Figure out what you're passionate about.”
     
    You indicated that you're interested in the science behind networking. What do you mean? “There's a science behind it. We're humans, and much of what happens in human interaction is predictable. It's not perfectly predictable, right? Temperature falls below 32 degrees, water freezes. I mean, that's perfectly predictable. But with human interactions, things aren't necessarily predictable, but they become really likely. For example, when you smile at somebody, they will smile back.”
     
    What is one thing that people often overlook in networking? “They're focused in on what's in it for them. And what you need to remember is that what networking is really about is about helping others and just kind of trusting that it'll come back to you.”
     
    Can you share with me your most successful or favorite networking story/experience that you’ve had? “Years ago, I got a referral from somebody in a meeting and said, I've got a referral for you, and in one of our AmSpirit meetings, and I was excited. I've got a referral. I don't know what it is. It's like, you know, it's like that present under the tree Christmas morning. I can hardly wait, and so after the meeting, a guy came up to me and he essentially said, you know, I want you to come speak at my group. And in the moment...”
     
    How do you stay in front of or best nurture your network community? “It's a discipline. You have to have a very disciplined approach to it. And what I mean by having a disciplined approach is, you know, I will systematically reach out to people in my network and just see how they're doing.”
      What advice do you have for the professional on growing their network? “Certainly get started…I wouldn't get caught up in trying to make it happen overnight. And I tell people, you can have a big, big network, you’re just not going to do it overnight. Focus on one person at a time.”
      Digital networking or traditional networking? “Traditional is where the value’s at, but you a lot of times can't have one without the other.”
     
    If you could go back to your 20-year-old self, what would you tell yourself to do more or less of regarding your career? “Well, it certainly has to do with networking. My 20-year-old self, I was in college. I played college football. I lived with my teammates, and that was my world. And I look at my daughter who plays college soccer, and she rooms with other women with other sports. And she is much better networked than I am. She interacts with people who don't play sports. I didn't do a lot of that.”
     
    We’ve all heard of the 6 degrees of separation… Now, who would be the one person you’d love to connect with, and do you think you could do it within the 6th degree? “My wife really likes Jon Bon Jovi. I would love to connect with him for her.”
     
    What book are you reading right now? “The one I'm looking at right now is Lewis Howes’ book, The School of Greatness, which is an awesome book. The Go-Giver by Bob Burg is another great book. The Power of Optimism by a psychologist out of Indianapolis, Tim Shurr…so, I've got a series of books that I'm kind of picking through.”
      Any final word

    • 29 min
    198: Writing a letter to Jay Leno - with Gary Loop

    198: Writing a letter to Jay Leno - with Gary Loop

    About Gary Loop Serving as a business consultant, executive coach, and life coach, Gary Loop has been transforming businesses and guiding leaders for over six years as President of Loop Group, LLC. For the last 12 years (of his 20+ year business career), he has been repeatedly entering new organizations facing various challenges. With his unique ability to develop deep levels of trust, from CEO to the front line, he rapidly gains a sense of the company landscape to deliver efficient and transformative results.
     
    There are literally hundreds of consultants and executive coaches in the marketplace. What differentiates you from the others? “I spent 14 years at We Energies, and We Energies at one point about a decade ago was last in the Midwest in customer satisfaction. And so, I had the opportunity, it was through the work of hundreds and thousands of employees to get it done. But to be in the front lines of watching an organization go from last in the Midwest, to one of the best in the country was outstanding.”
     
    What is your core strategy for your consultant/client relationship? “I'm a big fan of being a historian, rather than me coming in to find out what's going on now in a plan for the future, I spend a great deal of my time finding out what happened in the past. Where have you been? How did you get there? What worked well? What didn't work well?”
     
    What do you believe are the top low-cost tactics organizations can employ that will make an instant impact on their business? “The people is the big difference. Most of the payroll is people. And it's also in the planning. You know, if we can go through, one thing that I always say is, I'm not a firefighter. I’m a fire preventer. And so, we can go in and work with people that we have there.”
     
    Can you share with me your most successful or favorite networking story/experience that you’ve had? “I actually wrote a letter to Jay Leno back about 20 years ago, you know, and pretty much because I wasn't sure if I wanted to go into standup comedy. It was a letter that basically said, Dear Jay, thinking about standup comedy. I have no idea. I'm not even sure if I'm funny. You know, here's the deal. You know, I was commuting to community college, I was living at home with time. And, you know, I'm like, here's our home phone number. And 20 years ago, a phone call came in...”
     
    How do you stay in front of or best nurture your network community? “Mine is more sense and feel. And it's also based on opportunity. So, when I meet with folks, I want to know what I can do to help them… the other piece I would say is rather than being interesting, be interested.”
     
    What advice do you have for the professional on growing their network? “It's overcoming that fear. You know, if there's an event that's coming up with a lot of folks and you may not know anybody, it’s just walking in the door. You know, the hardest thing is walking into the door. I call it eating your vegetables. There are things that we don't always enjoy doing. And sometimes we have to eat our vegetables before we get to enjoy the steak.”
     
    Digital networking or traditional networking? “it's a mix. We are in five generations, as you know, and everyone has their different flavor and style. And so depending on which industry that I'm in, I will try to mirror where they're at.”
     
    If you could go back to your 20-year-old self, what would you tell yourself to do more or less of regarding your career? “Lots of moisturizer. My wife uses moisturizer, and she looks like she's 20. I look like I'm 90. So that’s number one. And number two is, you know, what's interesting is enjoy the ride.”
     
    We’ve all heard of the 6 degrees of separation… Now, who would be the one person you’d love to connect with, and do you think you could do it within the 6th degree? “I think like

    • 35 min
    197: Know your zone of genius - with Thembi Bheka

    197: Know your zone of genius - with Thembi Bheka

    About Thembi Bheka Thembi Bheka is the founder of She Breaks Thru, an agency that trains African women from disadvantaged backgrounds to work as technical virtual assistants. She believes in helping others reignite their passion, gain more clarity, and reconnect with their bigger purpose. She is on a mission to empower 1 million women by 2025.
     
    What triggered you to start your business? “I had traveled in Zimbabwe and I read an article on the paper about a girl who has committed suicide because she was tired of trading her body just to put food on the table. And that story just triggered a lot of emotions for me. First of all, it triggered my own history of what I went through getting out of my marriage, and it also triggered what I saw other women go through in Zimbabwe and every other woman who I was talking to about how they were stuck in abusive relationships because of money. And I said, I'm going to change this, I have to find a way to change it.”
     
    What is the number 1 thing entrepreneurs can do immediately to scale faster? “You really have to start working on your zone of genius and stop working on little things…and I'm not saying little as in they don't matter. No, but I mean the things that are not in your zone of excellence.”
     
    How have the connections you have made helped you as you started your business? “I think networking is the foundation of building a business. That's my opinion. I think just when you really want to build a business, you just have to start networking right away. And I'll just go back to when I first started investing in real estate…”
     
    Can you share with me your most successful or favorite networking story/experience that you’ve had? “I went to this event, my first ever online marketing event about three years ago, four years now, four years ago, and I had never been to that kind of event before. And I was lost. I was like, drowning in lost and I started talking to people in the lobby, who are sitting in Canada drinking beer…”
     
    How do you stay in front of or best nurture your network community? “I basically communicate with them through my email. I have a weekly blog and I have a podcast as well, where I basically share and talk about things in which kind of stays in touch with those people who I connect with. And they can see those in my email list. But in regards to the closer relationships, I try to stay in touch with people at least once a month, kind of just have, I call it my social day.”
     
    What advice do you have for the professional on growing their network? “Get off your butt. And by that, I mean just go to events, and it doesn't have to be events that are one thousand kilometers away from where you live. It could be local events. There are a lot of events in every local city.”
     
    Digital networking or traditional networking? “For me, it’s traditional. I call myself ancient, even though I'm working in a digital space. I find traditional more effective because you are meeting people in person and one on one.”
     
    If you could go back 20 years, what would you tell yourself to do more or less of regarding your career? “I would have taken more risks…and as much as I believe that I'm a risk-taker, but I always had those internal doubts within me that said, you know, ‘who do you think you are?’”
     
    We’ve all heard of the 6 degrees of separation… Now, who would be the one person you’d love to connect with and do you think you could do it within the 6th degree? “I was going to say Oprah...”
     
    What book are you reading right now? “I listen to a lot of podcasts, but my favorite one is by Ali Brown. It's called Ambition Radio…But in regards to the books, I'm just reading one called Rocket Fuel. I just finished it, actually, and started a new one called Profit Fest.”
     
    Any final words of advice for o

    • 23 min
    196: Changes in the B2B purchasing world - with Gary Kurtz

    196: Changes in the B2B purchasing world - with Gary Kurtz

    About Gary Kurtz Gary Kurtz is a sales and marketing professional, father of three, husband to an incredible woman, and a great friend to a lot of great people (not in that order). Gary works each day to be a little bit better in each part of his life and to make life better for those around him. Gary is known for hard work, big laughs, and going all out in everything that he does.
     
    Where do sales and marketing meet? “The difference between a salesperson and a marketing person is that a salesperson talks to customers and does more traveling. Other than that, they’re kind of meeting in the middle.”
     
    What do you look for when interviewing new employees? “More so than ever, cultural fit, I think is more important. Are they going to be reliable? Is there integrity? Can they stand up to your company's values and also do the job?”
     
    What are the trends in the B2B purchasing world? “The biggest trend that we're seeing in in B2B, and probably the same thing with B2C, is that there's a large, very large amount of decisions that are being made prior to anybody picking up a call. You know, people know that as soon as they are clicking on a link on something that they're going to be being followed in the nurturing campaign start.”
    “You see an iceberg and there's only, you know, an eighth of it that's showing out of the water, and everything underneath it is where people are making decisions now.”
     
    Can you share with me your most successful or favorite networking story/experience that you’ve had? “I met somebody at a trade show, like seven years ago. And like a half a year later…they called me, and they asked for just a small auxiliary product that costs like $300. And like we got to talk in that time. I was kind of saying them a bunch of headaches because their immediate supplier had ran out of something. If you fast forward, you know, five years now, we've done like $3 million with that company. And it all started with a conversation at a trade show.”
     
    How do you stay in front of or best nurture your network community? “The best thing that you can do for somebody is to reach out and just say hello every once in a while.”
     
    What advice do you have for the professional on growing their network? “Don't stop. I would say even when you're tired, and there's that event that's happening, go to it. When you're out and you're like, ‘okay, well, maybe I'll call it an early night tonight’, go out and do it.”
     
    Digital networking or traditional networking? “It's probably traditional, but when you're digitally networking, I think the best way to do it is to be moving towards traditional networking.”
     
    If you could go back to your 20-year-old self, what would you tell yourself to do more or less of regarding your career? “I would save more, for sure…I would definitely say saving is one of the things that you have to do no matter what, even if you're putting away 3%.”
     
    We’ve all heard of the 6 degrees of separation… Now, who would be the one person you’d love to connect with, and do you think you could do it within the 6th degree? “Shaq is a sales and marketing powerhouse…everything he touches, it turns to gold basically.”
     
    What book are you reading right now? “I just started reading Rocket Fuel in the EOS stuff. And that would probably be the second thing that I would tell people if you're a young person, is that you just can't stop reading.”
     
    Any final words of advice for our listeners? “Do something that's going to impact not only your life but other people so that they can find out who you are.”
     
    You can get in contact with Gary at:
    Email: gary@howardcompany.com(link sends e-mail)
    LinkedIn: Click Here

    • 32 min
    195: Meet new friends in a new city - with Christina Somerville

    195: Meet new friends in a new city - with Christina Somerville

    About Christina Somerville Christina Somerville is what you’d call a corporate refugee. Last year she decided to walk away from her 20-year sales and marketing career to better utilize her talents for connecting well with people and coaching others to do the same. She launched ConvoConnection - a resource of instruction and encouragement to help people have more genuine and enjoyable social connections. She feels passionate about empowering people to believe in their own social self-worth.
    Every week through her blog she shares ideas, tips, and best practices for eliminating social awkwardness and self-doubt to make way for projecting social ease and confidence. Because socializing happens all day long, her topics can be easily applied to both personal and professional interactions.
     
    Why did you decide to leave the corporate world and start ConvoConnection? “While I was in sales and marketing for 20 years and in my personal life kind of, you know, offline, I would have friends and colleagues come to me and say ‘You know, can you help me with, you know, preparing for this interview?’ or ‘I’ve got to talk to my boss about this topic, what should I say?’ And so that kind of happened very naturally.”
     
    You decided to enter the tech industry AND move to a new city. How did you both launch a new career AND find a new personal network? “My husband and I, this is back in 2013, we were living in Cincinnati, Ohio at the time and we both were like, you know, I don't think this is our seed like I think we were ready to move on to something else. We had really kind of scraped our way through the recession of 2008. And we're just ready to kind of move on. So, before we decided to move on geographically, both of us kind of made a pact with one another. And we said…”
     
    What one question can you always ask to open up any networking conversation? “I read an article about Terry Gross from NPR. And she says that she always asked this question at the start of her interviews, and I'm like, this is brilliant. And she says all she has to say is ‘so tell me about yourself.’ And what's so brilliant about that question, in my opinion, and she even acknowledges, is that it puts the onus on the interviewee to share what they want to share.”
     
    Can you share with me your most successful or favorite networking story/experience that you’ve had? “One of the best outcomes of my work, it wasn't actually to my benefit. It was to my husband's…when you interact with a whole bunch of people, sooner or later you're going to run into super connectors. And these are people who are usually like recruiters. They just know everybody. There's this other gal who I met who she is like, she's the mayor of Portland. She knows everybody…”
     
    How do you stay in front of or best nurture your network community? “What's right in front of you takes your attention. And if you don't keep up on it, time passes on and when time passes on the relationship kind of grow stale. And this is both personal and professional. So, what I do is I kind of set appointments for myself.”
     
    What advice do you have for the professional on growing their network? “Think about just being kind of the outlier and just make the first move. People would really appreciate it, that you go up and introduce yourself.”
     
    Digital networking or traditional networking? “It's probably is a hybrid. But yes, I would lean more on in-person networking…it's very efficient to make those initial connections today via LinkedIn or any kind of social media but like, let's go further than that.”
     
    Any final words of advice for our listeners? “Remember that almost everybody wants to connect and you making the first step is it pays dividends and people really do appreciate it so put in a little bit of effort lean in a little bit and you'll be really p

    • 35 min
    194: Put that smile on your face - with Brianna Rooney

    194: Put that smile on your face - with Brianna Rooney

    About Brianna Rooney Brianna Rooney, (AKA the Millionaire Recruiter) is 34 years old, owns Techees, has three houses, a top 100 restaurant www.mouthfuleatery.com, an amazing Chef of a husband and two little kids. Diego Danger (yes that's his real middle name) 5 years old, and a sweet little 2-year-old girl, Lima Ariel.
    Her very successful recruiting firm is the star of the show, www.techees.com.Techees is a firm that places highly sought-after software professionals with companies in the Bay Area that are high profile, high growth, VC-backed profitable pre-IPO and or public. Brianna takes the matchmaking approach. Hiring is all too similar to dating. If you want to do it right, you have to take the thoughtful road without all the fluff.
     
    How did you get the name, the millionaire recruiter? “It was by one of my employees, Ben Markowitz, who has been with me now for six, six and a half years. And he goes, ‘Hey, do you understand like how powerful your training is here and how I don't think anyone else does it like this?’…he's like, ‘yeah, I think we should make an e-course.’ So, he goes ‘and we're going to call you the millionaire recruiter ‘cause that’s what you are.’”
     
    What's the best way to work with people that feel threatened by you doing a better job than you do? “It's a topic about, I think, you know, the emotional intelligence. And it’s something I'm actually currently putting my whole team through, actually eight different workshops on this. And I think that this comes from being really self-aware and also realizing that people's intentions are not bad.”
     
    How do you build relationships without coming off like a salesperson? “We are more relationship builders. And once you realize that not every head has a dollar sign on it, that we're actually human beings and that, you know, paying it forward is really important. And maybe we're not making money off of this one conversation, but maybe this one conversation is then going to turn these three others because that person enjoyed you and then they'll recommend you. So, if you don't see like the bigger picture, I don't think you can truly be successful.”
     
    Can you share with me your most successful or favorite networking story/experience that you’ve had? “one of my most favorite networking things was in person and it was when we went to Women Who Code, it was a meetup group and we actually had a booth and I've never done that before…”
     
    How do you stay in front of or best nurture your network community? “I'm a really big believer in notes. Actually, I got it from, randomly, my gynecologist. So, you see this person once a year and she keeps amazing notes. So, every time I see her, even though it's been 365 days, she gets out her notes and she starts asking me about things that we talked about last year that I didn't even realize she wrote down.”
     
    What advice do you have for the professional on growing their network? “People need to realize that people really enjoy talking about themselves and they don't always get the opportunity. So, if you give them the opportunity, they'll jump on it. So, I think if you're going to start reaching out and start having connections and relationships, then you definitely have to give.”
     
    Digital networking or traditional networking? “Digital, absolutely. I'm not saying that it's my favorite, but…it's the fastest. You can do it anywhere. People are always on their phones, which is a good and bad thing. I just think it's the way to go.”
     
    If you could go back to your 20-year-old self, what would you tell yourself to do more or less of regarding your career? “I would have put myself out there a long time ago. So…I'm not a giant fan of social media because I think a lot of it can be fake or perceived, you know, a lot better than things actually are. So, I was

    • 28 min

Customer Reviews

Stallion golf ,

Great Show

Lori does such a great job interviewing a wide range of interesting guest. The interviews are full of great information and helpful ways to network and grow your influence. Very motivating, keep you the awesome job Lori!

Brian T Shirley ,

Amazing

Lori does a fantatsic job with the "Social Capital" podcast. Her questions are insightful, meaningful and really bring out the subject at hand. She does her homework oin the guests and it really shows in the interviews. The sound and subject matter are high quality. The interview goes by really quick because it's intersting and very well done!!

citygirl2 ,

Inspiring

Social Capital is one of my favorite podcasts for its variety, information and inspiring business owners being interviewed! Lori has easy conversations with her guests that end up teaching me something and leaving me feeling motivated to make changes in my own business that will help its growth.

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