After all, it had been decades since we had worked together at a full time job at that energy company. The members actually had reunions in Pittsburgh. Way too often there were emails about deaths among us, with threads of eulogies. Not a gregarious soul, I pulled the plug, informing the unofficial president to take me off the mailing list.
That's an extreme example of a network which outlives its shelf life. Reaching out by the unemployed or the newly employed looking for favors is annoying. After all, with so much change, we can hardly keep up with the Favor Bank of those who currently are part of how we make a living.
The problem is: How short has the shelf life of a network become? If we don't consider this we will have the brutual experience of being rebuffed when we reach out. In addition, if we don't set clear boundaries, we will be transmitting the message that our door is wide open.
Right now I am struggling with that critical issue. Soon I will be nicely leaving a situation I have been in for about a year. It has become the platform for my obtaining more lucrative assignments in a niche. Of course, the head of that expects goodies from me after I leave. That's how the game operates. The issue is how long before the relationship's expiration date expires?
None of us can invest in networking which can't produce short-term gains. With yesterdy being ancient history, the game is totally a now one.