I am not quite sure where I first heard about Molly Beck, probably from her articles from The Muse and was drawn by her blog’s quirky name: Smart, Pretty & Awkward.


Title:  Reach Out: The Simple Strategy You Need to Expand Your Network and Increase Your Influence 

Author: Molly Beck 

Pages: 240 pages (Hardback)

Publisher: McGraw Hill-Professional

Release Date:  29th September 2017

I am not quite sure where I first heard about Molly Beck, probably from her articles on career website, The Muse and was drawn by her blog’s quirky name: Smart, Pretty & Awkward.  Her blog offers advice that fits into these three categories along with a headline quote, which definitely brought joy to my blog feed. I thought she was right up my alley since as a millennial, I am looking to look and act the part but somehow ends up in rather (somewhat) awkward situations. Also fun fact about me: I used to have notebooks filled with quotes when I was in high school. And I still have them. Hence, I was particularly excited when Netgalley honoured my ARC request, obviously in exchange for an honest review.

Reach Out (RO) is anchored on Molly’s early career experience when she moved to the Big Apple (New York) for a part-time internship and was struggling to build connections. She shares anecdotes from her life and others on how they were able to reach out to people that they admired which propelled them to securing valuable advice and opportunities.

She differentiates between network and networking which is important in our social media age when it is quite easy to lose friends and alienate people. People tend to focus on numbers and fame when building their networks while neglecting the need to create symbiotic value.

Opportunities do come attached to people. But we tend to forget they may easier to obtain when we get out of our comfort zone and speak to our neighbours and not your industry celebrity who possibly will not give you the time of day.

I enjoyed the way that she breaks down the use of LinkedIn and less intimidating. Unfortunately, this is one of the most misunderstood social media platforms that bears a goldmine of opportunities. From my own conversations with some friends and colleagues, it seems that it is perceived as a platform to toot your horn. I concur with Ms Beck that LinkedIn is imperative for building one’s professional brand not only for research people for informational interviews but also for content creation (LinkedIn Publishing), thought leadership and learning (Lynda). In addition, RO was particularly helpful in helping me address the issue of what do when you are not quite sure why complete strangers would like to be connected on LinkedIn and social media generally.

The book does fulfil its promise of helping the reader to learn how to establish and strengthen their digital presence, to apply different reach out strategies and my personal favourite, how to step-by-step instructions on how to craft email and social media messages to those you want to connect with. Reach out made me reexamine my approach to networking especially as an INFJ, less intimidating;

As she rightly says, this book is about taking building connections to the next level. It is about cementing your relationships especially for introverts like me who want to deepen their ties with interesting people and they are not quite sure how. So, if you have read Reid Hoffman and Ben Casnocha’s The Start-up of You you will definitely love this one.  (You can read my full review here).

This book is a quick read and with all the helpful advice and templates, I wish I had a physical copy that would never leave my handbag.

Photo Credit: Goodreads

One thought on “Reach Out by Molly Beck

  1. Great review Lillian. This sounds quite insightful. I am yet to figure out how to use LinkedIn but I need to figure it out. It sounds like an important tool for networking.


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