See also, follow-up: The Network Effect - Part 2 (2007-06-24)

Originally posted 2007-02-19:

I have many hobby interests which have occupied my free time in the past. If you asked me what I would like to spend my free time doing (outside of work, family and spiritual pursuits) I would say squash / racquetball, hockey, electronics circuit building, working on my stamp collection, coding for fun, coding for profit, reading, gaming...

However, to describe what I have actually spent free time doing recently, I would say that Social Networking - especially on LinkedIn has dominated my spare moments. In 5-10 minutes a day and the odd day of 30 or so I have grown my direct connections to 369 and that quickly multiplies to over 50,000 2nd degree and over 2,000,000 3rd degree connections.



I am facinated by the 6 degrees of separation type observations of how small the world is in this information age. I try to practice Open Networking to link with like minded people and help the collective where I can with referrals. I've seen the value of this with interesting contacts being made by people that discover my profile through their network and in making targetted requests of my network which return results any sales/marketing team would drool over.

I made a decision a long time ago to pretty much ignore all social networking sites other than LinkedIn as I prefer to have one strong network rather than a bunch of weaker ones. LinkedIn caters mostly to professional networking and can be a very good tool in career development.

Please drop me a line if you'd like to join my network.

Happy Networking...

Cheers,
Michael.

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