New Kauffman Video Sketchbook Extols the Value, Shares the Strategy of Networking

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Kauffman FastTrac® president and author Alana Muller offers actionable approach for making professional, personal connections

As representatives of more than 100 entrepreneurship organizations from around the world gather this week in Rio de Janeiro for the 2013 Global Entrepreneurship Congress (GEC), idea sharing and networking are surely high on participants’ agendas. For those seeking to make the most of networking opportunities on-site and when they return home, today’s GEC Fringe Session, “Build Your Entrepreneurial Network,” will provide practical, actionable steps to help attendees maximize their time and efforts.

The newest video in the Kauffman Sketchbook series, “Open to Networking,” makes its global debut as part of today’s GEC session led by Kauffman FastTrac® leaders at 11 a.m. BRT/9 a.m. CDT. The networking approach the video shares is drawn from the personal experiences and seasoned advice of FastTrac president Alana Muller in her book Coffee Lunch Coffee: A Practical Field Guide for Master Networking.

In the three-minute animated video, Muller says it’s critically important for entrepreneurs to surround themselves with mentors, advisers, investors, customers, friends and family because such individuals can “prop them up, cheer them on, do a few reality checks that help an entrepreneur maintain focus on achieving his or her vision.”

Muller acknowledges that the very notion of networking is daunting for many. “But it’s a very human activity,” she says. “Networking allows us to connect with others, establish community and deepen one’s sense of belonging.”

To prepare for active networking, individuals are encouraged to compile four lists:

  •     people you already know and want to reconnect with;
  •     people you would like to get to know;
  •     companies and organizations you would like to get to know; and
  •     your personal values, ethics and principles.

Once the lists are prepared, it’s time to make the phone calls, send the emails and schedule the meetings upon which networks begin to build.

“We all have information to share from our own experiences,” Muller says. “If we exchange it readily, we can truly add value to one another’s lives.”

Since the Kauffman Sketchbook series launched in September 2011, the videos featuring the insights of influential thought leaders in the areas of education and entrepreneurship have drawn more than 230,000 viewers to YouTube and The Sketchbooks, which won a top award from the Greater Kansas City Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America, have been widely shared on a variety of websites, blogs and social media outlets, as well as at numerous events and conferences.

About Kauffman FastTrac®
Kauffman FastTrac is the leading global provider of learning curricula that equip aspiring and existing entrepreneurs with the business skills and insights, tools, resources and network to start and grow successful businesses. Kauffman FastTrac was created by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the largest foundation in the world devoted to entrepreneurship. For more information about Kauffman FastTrac, visit, view a video at, and follow on Twitter @fasttrac, Facebook at and LinkedIn at


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Rose Levy
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