It’s Not Who You Know…

…but who you don’t really know that will make your network more effective.

There are many collaborative tools out there to help people in organizations work better together and to increase productivity. However, individuals who constantly interact with the same network of people may actually hinder innovation.

The idea is that if your network consists of people who are actually less connected, you are more likely to hear new ideas that have not gone public yet. This empowers you to put disparate ideas together and create brand new opportunities. When you remove yourself from the crowd, you will be enlightened by how much more you can think outside the box.

Based on this theory, the following diagrams from Harvard Business Review suggest that although Richard might have a “better” network at first glance, it is actually Susan who has a more “effective” network.

social network analysis - richardsocial network analysis - susan

If your organization uses a social network analysis tool, you might want to keep an eye out for the Susans of the world when choosing someone to fill your next leadership position.

Source: Harvard Business Review

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