When people go into the professional world, they usually go in with a very cynical and cloistered mentality. This is very true among software engineers, but this mentality often holds them back when it comes to professional networking.
Here are the core points from the video:
- Kindness is 10x more valuable when it's unexpected - Because everyone has that more cynical mentality in the workplace, proactively being very kind to people that don't expect it builds up an immense amount of trust extremely quickly. By taking a chance on someone like this, you are short-circuiting the normally long and laborious process of earning trust.
- You can "target" kindness tactically - You don't need to waste a bunch of time being overwhelmingly kind to everyone around you. You should do it for people who are important to your workflow, those who you have observed being kind to others, and those who would be valuable to your professional network in general.
- Alex's and Rahul's Unexpected Kindness Story
- Rahul started at Portal a couple months after Alex did.
- Portal was a very young org at this time with almost 0 onboarding infrastructure.
- When Rahul joined, Alex still didn't really know what he was doing, but he knew more than Rahul did as he was brand new. Alex went out of his way to onboard Rahul smoothly, using his past struggles to make sure Rahul didn't hit the same pitfalls. This included a private doc Alex had been building up of the "tricks" he had learned while onboarding at Portal.
- This unexpected act of kindness was the foundation for the relationship between Alex and Rahul, which has led them to cofound Taro!