Networking Lessons from Trees: How Suzanne Simard’s Discoveries Can Help You Connect Better

Insights on how trees communicate and share resources amongst themselves, how this concept is applicable to our professional lives, and the emphasis on the importance of networking and creating lasting relationships for individual and collective success.

Lucas A. Meyer


March 30, 2023

Recently, I stumbled upon an intriguing interview on “People I mostly admire” podcast with Suzanne Simard, a professor of forest ecology at the University of British Columbia. In this interview, she shared a fascinating perspective on trees that I had never considered before. She argued that trees are social beings that communicate with each other, and they share nutrients using fungi networks.

Simard’s insights about trees communicating with each other were stunning. She explained that when a tree is under stress, it sends out chemical signals to warn nearby trees. These signals prompt the other trees to adjust their behavior to avoid the same stressor. Additionally, the trees prefer to help other trees that are related to them, indicating that they have a sense of community and kinship.

I found this perspective on trees to be enlightening and thought-provoking for several reasons. For one, it suggests that the notion of individual success is often overblown. Just like trees, we can accomplish much more when we work together and support each other. Building and nurturing professional relationships is crucial for success in today’s world.

Moreover, Simard’s insights about the interconnectedness of trees through fungi networks highlighted the importance of networking. Just like trees, we too can benefit from networks in our professional lives. It is essential to create and maintain lasting relationships with colleagues and industry peers.

In conclusion, if trees can go so far as to network, then we should be doing the same. Suzanne Simard provides us with a new perspective on trees that can be applied to our professional lives. We can learn a lot from trees and their social interactions.