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Sometime in May 2019, I met a young man at an event I had been invited to speak at.

The Moderator of the event had asked that we network for about 10 minutes. This young man walked up to me at the back and introduced himself. He told me the industry he was working in, described what he did in a summary, gave me his card and went back to his seat.

This young man stood out because he had emphasized what he did and that stuck with me as his field was something I was working on within The Smart Investment Club (a platform where we teach about Investment and practice what we learn by seizing credible Investment opportunities).

To cut the long story short, I called him a few weeks after and till date, we have transacted in mutually beneficial businesses with the monetary value running into tens of millions.

Often times, we read a lot about Emotional Intelligence, Financial Intelligence and more, but Connectional Intelligence; what you may call Networking Intelligence is relatively unknown. The proper art of Networking which is the enabler of successful social, financial and economic relationships has not been properly mastered by a lot of us.

Technology has changed things and networking with the aid of technology has taken new dimensions. It is possible to be in business transactions with people you have never met in person and have no inhibitions about dealing with them because you have gained confidence through your interactions with them. Given the same set of circumstances, some people fare better in closing out deals and prospects than many others because of their ability to “connect” well.

What is Connectional Intelligence (CI)?

According to Erica Dhawan, “it is the ability to create and drive greater value by effectively harnessing your networks and relationships”. She goes on to say that CI is the next, greatest trait or skill that leaders will use to bring change to their workplaces and the world.

Connectional Intelligence is the ability to combine resources, people, tools and technology in relationships with an end result of wealth or value creation. It is about sharing mutual value with the person you are connecting with.

Everyone meets a lot of people at different events and collects loads of cards (I have lost cards and sometimes shredded some when decluttering). Hardly would anyone remember you if you don’t leave a succinct, lasting impression on their mind. What value can you bring to the table for them?

Remember, everyone you meet is your potential business partner, enabler or collaborator.

When you meet with people and exchange contacts, you must have in mind three Ws

The “Who” you are
The “Why” you are talking with them
The “What” matters to you both.


The secret to doing this effectively is Mastering an Elevator Pitch which should contain no more than 5 sentences that summarizes what you do. In 5 mins, you should be able to “sell” yourself and engrave a lasting impression about you in the mind of the listener.

My pitch would go like this for example:
“My name is Sola Adesakin
I am a Multi-Passionate and Multi-Talented Finance Coach
I help people and businesses identify their financial capabilities and how to scale it up.
I help them Make, Manage and Multiply their money.
I have helped many individuals and businesses bounce back from stress to wealth”

Erica Dhawan goes on to mention the 5 Cs of connectional intelligence which are: curiosity, combination, community, courage, and combustion

My relationships and networking skills have taken a great shape ever since I got deliberate about getting more connectional intelligence. At this 2019 WIMBIZ Annual Conference and just anywhere you get to meet new people, be deliberate about how you network with the people and what you do with their contacts details.

I am grateful to Toyin Ademola who created this awareness about CI to me.

Sola Adesakin FCA FCCA CPA MBA, is Lead Coach/ Founder of Smart Stewards

For more information about the 2019 WIMBIZ Annual Conference, visit On Day 1 of the Conference, there will be a Networking Breakfast for professionals. This is open to ONLY delegates who register and pay an extra fee of N12,000. This Networking Breakfast offers you an opportunity to meet professionals from a variety of sectors in a structured and timed networking session.

To register for the WIMBIZ Annual Conference and Networking Breakfast click here

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