Instead of job seekers telling me what they want in their next position they tell me their work history: "I did __ at ABC company, then I did ____ at XYZ Corp. then before that I ....". Although I am doing my best to listen, my mind is wandering. I can't help but assume that a networking contact would lose interest also. When I stop and ask the job seekers again what are they looking for they pause for a a moment and say, "That is a really good question. I'll have to think about that."
Your work history does not neccesarily lead you in your desired career direction. If you tell a perspective employer or networking contact what you've done, they will assume you want to do the exact same thing.
You may not know the specific job title you are looking for but you should be able to articulate what skills and expertise you possess that you want to bring with you to your next position.
This is the first step in networking. People want to help, you need to help them understand how. I support people in verbalizing to others where they want to go and what skills / expertise they want to bring to that next position.
It's not where you've been but where you want to go that's important.