Quantity and/or Quality
When Penny Power conceived the idea of Ecademy February 7th 1998 she estimates she had 20 good business contacts Penny hadn't worked since 1992 she was bringing up our three children born 1992 (Hannah), 1994 (Ross), 1997 (TJ).
Today when you speak to Penny 11 years later she estimates she has 2000 good business contacts none of which she knew prior to 1998. Since that time 391,000 people have put a profile on Ecademy and 10.3m email addresses have been collected through the Ecademy Invite system.
Penny has experienced quantity in and quality out like many members on Ecademy.
Typically 10,000 people login each day to Ecademy Monday to Friday and 5,000 people login on Saturday and Sunday. It's clearly impossible to connect with all these people but can you imagine just how many people you are missing out on each day who are important contacts to you? We have to solve this problem for each of you.
One of the tools we are experimenting with is autoconnect you can read about this experiment with Ces Loftus here. What we are effectively doing is bashing (fusing) people together live and in real time and seeing what happens. Random connections live and in real time. Nuclear Fusion will supersede Nuclear Fission during the 21st century.
It is my belief that the people you don't know are of more value to you than the people you do know. I call these random connections and my thesis was born from Mark Granovetter's PhD 1973.
The Strength of Weak Ties or Interpersonal Ties theory is this:
In mathematical sociology, interpersonal ties are defined as information-carrying connections between people. Interpersonal ties, generally, come in three varieties: strong, weak, or absent. Weak social ties, it is argued, are responsible for the majority of the embeddedness and structure of social networks in society as well as the transmission of information through these networks. Specifically, more novel information flows to individuals through weak rather than strong ties. Because our close friends tend to move in the same circles that we do, the information they receive overlaps considerably with what we already know. Acquaintances, by contrast, know people that we do not, and thus receive more novel information.
Included in the definition of absent ties, according to Granovetter, are those relationships (or ties) without substantial significance, such as "nodding" relationships between people living on the same street, or the "tie", for example, to a frequent vendor one would buy from. Furthermore, the fact that two people may know each other by name does not necessarily qualify the existence of a weak tie. If their interaction is negligible the tie may be absent. The "strength" of an interpersonal tie is a linear combination of the amount of time, the emotional intensity, the intimacy (or mutual confiding), and the reciprocal services which characterize each tie.
There is obvious huge debate about quality and quantity on Ecademy and I come from the quantity argument believing that you cannot choose the right people when networking. On the contrary the so called right people choose you instead and by accident. Much like when you find your spouse or love of your life.
This is a theory I would like to prove before I die as I believe people on the whole are closed selective controlling and this prejudice and so called experience prevents them from meeting the right people for them. The right people are those who produce a better result or outcome than the people you already know.
We have had many discussions on Ecademy over the years about this here:
We want these debates to continue until we can prove that quantity is more important in your networking than quality. We have run autoconnect for 30 people, free members, Power Networkers, BlackStars. Each one is experiencing something different, some negative, some positive and both unusual and unexpected. This is the random piece that people do not realize is there. The results are likely to emerge between now and Xmas we hope to roll out autoconnect (or fusion) to every member in 2010.
In order that you have more content to form your thoughts from I have included some additional articles worth pondering.
Interestingly Swine Flu a popular or should I say unpopular topic right now is also in the centre of the quantity quality debate.
Why? Because at this juncture, quantity is more critical than quality. That will change once the pandemic is under control, but for this first wave, I think all these stocks have something going for them.
My dear thanks to Mark Sinclair of YourBusinessChannel for designing, creating and producing these summary shows of my thoughts. Thomas Power Unplugged will continue in August after our Summer break I do hope you enjoy today's show. There are 7 places remaining on my social media retreat August 20/21 and I look forward to seeing you there. One thing's for sure those 12 people will arrive completely unknown to one another and leave as lifelong contacts. Will one of them be you?