Experience the value of your personal network by building watered-down friendships, strengthen current weak bonds that used to be strong.
Quality of the personal network
Being part of various social networks has become an almost unconscious part of our lives for many of us; a day without attention for our contacts on Facebook or Linked In is almost impossible to imagine. When participating in these social networks it is important to pay attention to the development of our personal network. After all, a high-quality personal network appears to be of great value for discovering new ideas and business opportunities, and for increasing the chances of a new job, new challenges and promotion. The quality of the personal network is also vital for leadership. Not only to perform optimally in collaboration with others, but also to stay informed and learn from the developments that occur. For more info, read this.
Development of the personal network
In networking to make new contacts, we see that the focus is often more on the quantity than on the quality of contacts. We tend to focus on the expansion of our personal network and less on the development of current contacts in the social network. The orientation is often still primarily focused on the number of new persons (‘nodes’) and less on the nature of the existing and new connections (‘edges’). My advice is to have the network perspective in mind: the value of a network does not increase so much with the growth of the number of new contacts, but more with the potentially exponential increase in the number of real connections in the total of existing and new contacts. .
Dormant connections in the personal network
Our current personal network consists of people with whom we have various connections. With some we have a lot of and intensive contact (‘strong links’) such as good friends and people with whom we currently work closely; we hardly have (any longer) contact with others (‘weak links’), such as old friends, former classmates and colleagues from the past (see blog article’ Bridging black holes in collaboration’). Often we are hardly aware of this now weak bond of contacts. And that while there may be very interesting contacts among this group. In particular, it concerns the people with whom we had a strong bond in the past. In network theory, the connections with these people are called dormant (‘dormancy’). These dormant connections can be of great value for optimal performance and learning in the present as the contacts are tightened back into strong bonds again.
Experience the value of dormant connections for yourself
You can research into dormant connections shows that people are often surprised by the tremendous value of strengthening their old good contacts. In addition to the psychosocial value, the content often involves new ideas, unexpected insights, different perspectives and surprising advice. What people often experience is the speed with which the contact and trust are as before. No doubt each of us has experienced this at one time or another with a friendship that has faded over time. Time seems to have stood still on the chance to see them again. This experience is for each of us, choose one good contact from the past every month with which you now have a dormant connection and get in touch. It’s worth the try the energy and time you put into a watered-down friendship is out of proportion to the effort you need to make to build a strong bond with a totally new contact. Experience the value of a number of quoted contacts with dormant connections for you and your personal network!