It's not what you know but who you know.
I have heard that statement for years. There were times when I heard that that I felt like the person who was saying it was making excuses for their lot in life. As I have gotten older (and hopefully gained some wisdom), I have come to believe that there is a lot of truth in that statement.
To quote a cell phone company, "It's the Network."
The word "networking" typically has a negative connotation and is often viewed as something that is not for us...it is only for people with sales jobs. However, it is something that is extremely important, especially during tough economic times...regardless of your vocation. Justin Pinkerman wrote a nice article on this subject and he refutes the three common networking myths:
Myth #1: Networking is for self-promoting schmoozers.
Myth #2: Network is only for salespeople or outgoing personalities.
Myth #3: Networking, by nature, is uncomfortable, forced, and contrived.
Check it out here.