303: Michael Simmons | Top 30 Under 30


science / science 746 Views comments

"A lot of the best stories are the ones you are most resistant to share." - Michael Simmons

The Cheat Sheet:
  • What are brokers and why are they uniquely successful?
  • The most common mistake people make when posting online.
  • How to use social media as an online story-telling platform.
  • Michael's personal story on the power of connection.
  • The ninja Soundcloud introduction hack and how to use it.
  • How to build that network of kindred spirits, according to Michael.
  • And so much more...

Authentic connection. It seems to be a rare commodity today, especially in the online social media world. If you're like most people, you have that one friend online who is always bragging about how great his/her life is. They post pictures of their flashy car (or even just a flashy car, it doesn't have to be theirs) and their latest awesome vacation. They're a trophy wall poster.

While we might be inclined to think a trophy wall makes someone cool, it actually has the opposite effect. And here to tell us why and the science behind that (and plenty more) is Michael Simmons of Forbes magazine.

More About This Show:

Michael is a writer for Forbes magazine and he's also an international keynote speaker, author, teacher and entrepreneur. He was also voted one of the Top 25 Under 25 by Business Week.

Today he also writes for Forbes magazine on the topic of authentic relationship building in the age of social media and he spends hours on each article. Each piece is thoroughly explored, researched and backed up by various scientific studies and expert input.

We talk about numerous aspects of networking in this episode, the first being the clusters in the networks you have. Most people think they have one big network, but in actuality we all have smaller clusters within our giant network.

The greatest indicator of our success and anyone else's is how well connect those clusters. According to Ron Burt, an expert on networking, the most successful people in the world are those who connect people from their various clusters. To do this, you've got to establish your identity and connections within each cluster and then move to connect your connections. It's what Ron calls "brokering" and it is what makes people the most successful.

One way to build your reputation is, of course, online through social media. But where most people fall down is using social media to brag and post about how great their lives are. They only post the "trophies" and the victories, not the struggles and challenges they overcame to get those "trophies".

And Michael believes sharing authentically, vulnerably and courageously about those struggles and challenges along with the triumphs is what will actually deepen and strengthen your relationships.He cites a Princeton University study on authenticity to back this up as well as work produced by Abraham Tesser, an American psychologist and research professor with the University of Georgia.

Another related topic we explore is his habit of making one introduction a day. He talks about the value this creates for others and how he uses a double opt-in introduction format for the most impact.

There's plenty more Michael and I talk about in this like his 7 power networking habits to cultivate and how your own story makes you relatable online and in person. There's plenty of useful and applicable content in this episode, I hope you'll listen, digest and apply all the great takeaways we share. Thanks for listening.

Resources from this episode:

Michael's web site Michael on TwitterThe One Thing You Should Do After Meeting Anyone New, Michael's article on ForbesContactually Emerson Spartz

You'll also like: -The Art of Charm Toolbox -Best of The Art of Charm Podcast


If you dug this episode, please subscribe in iTunes and write us a review! This is what helps us stand out from all the fluff out there.


Hit us up with your comments and guest suggestions. We read EVERYTHING.

Stay Charming!