Using Socilab, I generated a visual depiction of my LinkedIn network. An interesting observation is that there are distinct network clusters in my professional network with very little connectivity between them. I hadn’t previously given much thought to how connected my connections are, but this observation has sparked a question: Am I doing my part to be a “network activator” (McLean & Company, 2017)? In other words, should I be making an effort to facilitate connections between people in my network who could benefit from one another’s knowledge or skills?
Research done by McLean & Company in the past couple of years indicates that the answer is yes – that to be an effective leader in the volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous (VUCA) environment in which we all now operate, we must make a concerted effort to forge these connections (2017). This act of network activation helps both our network members and ourselves: network members are able to more efficiently and effectively navigate their challenges and optimize their opportunities; and we are better able to identify the competencies of those in our network, while simultaneously deepening our connections within our digital community.
As I consider the implications for my digital plan, I am interested to hear my MALAT network’s thoughts on network activation: Do you currently engage in network activation? If so, is it often in response to a request (e.g. a personal ask or a post asking for expertise on a specific topic)? and/or Do you seek out opportunities to create connections for members of your network?
McLean & Company. Integrated Leadership. May 9, 2017. https://hr.mcleanco.com/research/ss/integrated-leadership