I was invited to attend the GAP Forum on Leveraging Networks in Business last week and caught up with some old friends like John Finnigan and Robert Kay. The two days were focussed on getting an interesting group together to work out ways to apply network theory and practice in a business and trade context.
John’s presentation on network theory got me thinking. Particularly the idea of network avalanches—how connectivity in a network progresses in sharp transitions rather than gradually (this feature of a network is what worries people about avian flu). I’m sure Andrew will talk about this phenomena at his seminar about making social network analysis more social, so I wont say more about it here. It did get me thinking about ways we can create new links in a network. Please feel free to suggest others.
Partly tongue in cheek, Andrew suggested that the person running the social club raffle has a good opportunity to form new social ties. But I think a social tie’s strength (remembering the strength of weak ties) relies on shared experience and perhaps the amount of pain or pleasure you’ve shared. I remember hiking up Pigeon House mountain with 4 guys, 2 or whom I only knew briefly before the walk. We left late, it started raining, the last 100 metres involved climbing up rusted and rickety ladders and we didn’t take any food. Needless to say the walk was miserable but the friendships are enduring.
About Shawn Callahan
Shawn, author of Putting Stories to Work, is one of the world's leading business storytelling consultants. He helps executive teams find and tell the story of their strategy. When he is not working on strategy communication, Shawn is helping leaders find and tell business stories to engage, to influence and to inspire. Shawn works with Global 1000 companies including Shell, IBM, SAP, Bayer, Microsoft & Danone. Connect with Shawn on:
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