Known as the ‘Queen of Networking’, Carole has amassed more than 40,000 names in her contacts database and written two successful books on the subject – Networking: The Art of Making Friends and The Ultimate Guide to Successful Networking.
Networking is not an add-on, Carole says, but an essential part of her business life: “There’s no question that it has helped my business grow, bringing new opportunities to bid for work, or learn about ideas that help me expand my business horizons.”
Maintaining such a large contacts book is not easy. Carole works hard to remember the smallest details of everyone she meets, and always keeps her promises. She is constantly in touch with her contacts by phone and email, but insists that meeting in person is still the best way to network:
“For me, nothing compares with face to face. I have often found a real meeting invaluable. In direct conversation topics, ideas, problems and solutions come up between you that would never arise in any other way.”
Simon Walker, Director General of the IoD, who spoke at the Women as Leaders conference, congratulated Carole on her award: “It’s a testament to Carole’s success as both a business person and a networker that she saw off such well-known names as Martha Lane Fox and Arianna Huffington to claim the title of ‘Britain’s Best Connected Woman’.
“In my speech to the conference I emphasised my commitment to advancing women’s role on boards and in other leadership positions. I will be looking to successful women like Carole for advice as I pursue this goal.”