You want to be someone who is good to know. There are two common ways of being this person that everyone “should meet.” The first is the more common route: you’re in a position of power. Examples of this would be the founder of a startup, the director of an organization the VP at a big company or even an employee at an admirable company like IDEO or Google.
I’ve made the mistake of thinking that having an important title makes you an interesting person. WRONG. It does not. Maybe I ask the wrong questions, but a lot of the “important” people that I meet at networking events end up being disappointing conversationalists.
The second way to be good to know is because you’re generous and helpful. You’re a great listener who can help someone with a sticky situation. You’re a creative mind who always presents new solutions. Maybe you’re a super connector and you’re eager to introduce strangers to people in your network that could help.
What’s nice about the second route is that you don’t need to wait to do it. You don’t need to be granted a title in order to start being helpful. You can become a better listener, a more creative person and a more generous connector tomorrow.
I think the choice is obvious, but it’s up to you to start the journey.