I am on social network overload with websites, facebook, twitter, youtube , and my two newest loves pinterest and instagram. I remained convinced I had reached my networking limit until I understood the concept of the strength of weak ties.
In 1973, before the birth of any of this computer associations, John Hopkins sociologist, Mark Granovetter, published a theory: The Strength of Weak Ties proving that innovation travels most effectively via weak connections.
For example, in a specific field, the newest information comes from attending an assembly of some kind and not from your daily work environment. It also works in reverse because the ideas you present at that same gathering will spread through interested colleagues to their variety of professional networks much further than it would if your present it to your immediate work environment.
When in the market for a new career, job openings are more likely to arise from extended networking because close connections have the same limited information about possible job openings that have already been explored.
Apply the same idea to starting a new business where success is bred and opportunities come via the referral of others in an extended network of weak ties that re-refer your services within their own networks.
In generating creative ideas, people who maintain exposure to diverse behaviors discover breakthrough innovations. In other words, they tap a wide variety of weak ties to produce more creative solutions that they would be hard pressed to generate acting alone.
Which brings me to Linkedin that is organized around extended networks. They even have a little chart so you can see how your connections spread. Long story short, if you haven’t received my linkedin connection, please take the effort to connect with me. Together we will create larger networks of creative possibility.