Maximize your team’s power. Identify your connector type.
When everyone knows and plays their role, it helps the team operate at a higher level.
ERICA DHAWAN: Ten years ago Malcolm Gladwell, a famous author, coined the concept of a connector as one of the three types of people that create the rise of social epidemics. And that idea of being a connector captivated corporate America and really global corporations around the world for the last decade. But in today's era I'd argue that the idea of being a connector is outdated because we are all connectors, we are over connected. So the job today is not just to say whether we're a connector or not, it's really about how do we connect intelligently in today's world to drive value not only for our teams and our organizations but for our broader stakeholder network.
What we found in our research is that in today's world there are actually three types of connectors that allow you to really capture the power of connectional intelligence. The three types of connectors are number one, the thinkers, number two, the enablers, and number three, the connection executors.
First, the thinkers. The thinkers are the people that are great at combining ideas and bringing in new types of curiosity to problems. These are the people that are always asking how might we solve this differently, or let's take a devils advocate view, or let's bring this approach from an outside industry or a different team in a way that allows us to solve this problem differently. So you may think of those people that are thinkers on your team as the ones that are always bringing in that different prospective or that different approach that will allow you to transform your mindset of how you solve a problem.
The second type of connector are the enablers. These are your traditional people connectors. These are those that are really good at bringing together all the right people that need to come together to solve a problem. You can think about these people as the community builders. They're often those that understand not just how might we solve this problem but here are the five people we need to engage that could allow us to combine a different perspective or give us a different approach to allow us to mobilize this effort forward.
And the third type of connector are the connection executors. These are the people that love to just get things done; they know how to amplify; they know how to mobilize. They're often not those that are bringing in the new big idea or bringing the community together, they are those that love to get things done when the community is already built. They are the combusters if you think about the mobilizers on a team.
So as you think about your own role in your organization are you more of a thinker, are you more of an enabler or are you more of a connection executor? And how might you design your team to make sure that you're leveraging these three types of connector skillsets to really maximize the power of the networks on your own team?
The other thing is that it's really important to be careful of connector bias. If we're thinkers. we often love to connect with other thinkers on our team and we end up spending lots of time in meetings talking about ideas but leading into analysis paralysis. If we're enablers, we may love to bring people together, but that could lead to too many meetings all the time that lead into inefficiencies and delays. And if we're connection executors, we may love to be around other executors who love to implement project plans but we may be losing sight of how we might be engaging other functions in our company, other businesses, other networks that could help us really amplify that effort. So the power of connectional intelligence is not only understanding your own connector type, but making sure that you're building a network that allows you to leverage those that are different from you.
- Building off of the "three archetypes of people" idea established by Malcolm Gladwell, Cotential CEO and co-author of the bestselling book "Get Big Things Done" Erica Dhawan argues that we are all now some form of "connector." The next step is to find ways to connect intelligently.
- Dhawan says that there are three kinds of connectors: thinkers, enablers, and connection executors. Each brings a unique skillset to a team, and all are necessary for growth and success.
- The key is to create a work environment where the three groups are not functioning as separate departments, but are working together and leveraging those skills to strengthen the team.
- 3 benefits of working remotely | Erica Dhawan | dotcom ›
- Connectional intelligence: 5 core skills you can learn - Big Think ›
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Is immigration key to bolstering the American economy? Could having one billion Americans secure the US's position as the global superpower?
Researchers detect a large lake and several ponds deep under the ice of the Martian South Pole.
- Italian scientists release findings of a large underground lake and three ponds below the South Pole of Mars.
- The lake might contain water, with salt preventing them from freezing.
- The presence of water may indicate the existence of microbial and other life forms on the planet.
Mars colony: Humanity's greatest quest | Michio Kaku, Bill Nye, & more | Big Think<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="aa931ba0f8c1152a7c32c5e09c55d138"><iframe type="lazy-iframe" data-runner-src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/KfKr5Jll88o?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span>
"Nothing but naked people: fat ones, thin ones, old, young…"
"The Yellow Sands", 1888, John Reinhard Weguelin; source: Wikimedia Commons<h3>Naked revolution</h3><p>Yet long before anyone knew about beach fashion, naturism was trendy. Bathing naked in the sea was going on in England as early as 1840. However, during the reign of Queen Victoria, this pleasure was outlawed. But it popped up again among the conservative Germans. In 1898, the first Naturist Club was founded in Essen and in 1900 the Wandering Birds group (<em>Wandervögel</em>) was scouring the country for uninhabited places and naked sunbathing. In the same year, Heinrich Pudor wrote <em>The C</em><em>ult of </em><em>the </em><em>Nud</em><em>e</em>, winning the hearts of contemporary supporters of naturism.</p><p>In the 1920s, on the back of this, members of the Movement for Natural Healing (<em>Naturheilbewegung</em>) organized naked sunbathing for the improvement of health. Persuaded by Pudor's theory of the healing properties of the sun and wind, which could be absorbed through the skin, they launched the naked revolution.</p><p>Pudor's book became the naturists' manifesto and soon after, not far from Hamburg, the Free Body Culture (<em>Freikörperkultur</em>, or FKK) movement was founded. This spread through other German centres and brought together thousands of people. The FKK still operates under the same name today.</p><p>The cult of the naked body even wrote itself into the ideology of fascist Germany, which advocated a pure, Aryan race. But in 1933, Hermann Göring issued an order that defined nudity as "the greatest threat to the German soul" and, with that, criminalized naturist organizations. But this wasn't the end of the movement. The naturists went underground, continuing their activities under the guise of improving physical fitness.</p><p>In 1936, the idea was even floated of having a naturist display to open the Berlin Olympic Games. It was quickly dropped. Despite this, in 1939 the naturists managed to organize their own Games in the Swiss village of Thielle.</p>
A strange weakness in the Earth's protective magnetic field is growing and possibly splitting, shows data.
- "The South Atlantic Anomaly" in the Earth's magnetic field is growing and possibly splitting, shows data.
- The information was gathered by the ESA's Swarm Constellation mission satellites.
- The changes may indicate the coming reversal of the North and South Poles.
Is the Magnetic Field Reversing?<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="e3e0b16dac3b05dab808a4ddf04d198b"><iframe type="lazy-iframe" data-runner-src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/51usJ74pPP8?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span>
Crows have their own version of the human cerebral cortex.
Action-packed pallia<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yNDQ0NzkyMS9vcmlnaW4ucG5nIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYxNzk1NzM1OH0.Tjb3zulFW2gwhteR124F9HGbmdnCqNqQFOBQouieTJ8/img.png?width=980" id="2bbc9" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="2907e4035e553565f4446e968ee73d92" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" />
Fun with Ozzie and Glenn<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yNDQ0Njk2MS9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYxMzY4Njc2MX0.ZgpsPMCK6qOj2o0kErvVPjdua1EnMCIwCuHHGrb3LiY/img.jpg?width=980" id="acbeb" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="2e286fecbb228a5ca8aa26fcd19f95a2" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="two crows in a tree" />
Ozzie and Glenn not pictured
Credit: narubono/Unsplash<p>The kind of higher intelligence crows exhibited in the new research is similar to the way we solve problems. We catalog relevant knowledge and then explore different combinations of what we know to arrive at an action or solution.</p><p>The researchers, led by neurobiologist <a href="https://homepages.uni-tuebingen.de/andreas.nieder/" target="_blank">Andreas Nieder</a> of the University of Tübingen in Germany, trained two carrion crows (<em>Corvus corone</em>), Ozzie and Glenn.</p><p>The crows were trained to watch for a flash — which didn't always appear — and then peck at a red or blue target to register whether or not a flash of light was seen. Ozzie and Glenn were also taught to understand a changing "rule key" that specified whether red or blue signified the presence of a flash with the other color signifying that no flash occurred.</p><p>In each round of a test, after a flash did or didn't appear, the crows were presented a rule key describing the current meaning of the red and blue targets, after which they pecked their response.</p><p>This sequence prevented the crows from simply rehearsing their response on auto-pilot, so to speak. In each test, they had to take the entire process from the top, seeing a flash or no flash, and then figuring out which target to peck.</p><p>As all this occurred, the researchers monitored their neuronal activity. When Ozzie or Glenn saw a flash, sensory neurons fired and then stopped as the bird worked out which target to peck. When there was no flash, no firing of the sensory neurons was observed before the crow paused to figure out the correct target.</p><p>Nieder's interpretation of this sequence is that Ozzie or Glenn had to see or not see a flash, deliberately note that there had or hadn't been a flash — exhibiting self-awareness of what had just been experienced — and then, in a few moments, connect that recollection to their knowledge of the current rule key before pecking the correct target.</p><p>During those few moments after the sensory neuron activity had died down, Nieder reported activity among a large population of neurons as the crows put the pieces together preparing to report what they'd seen. Among the busy areas in the crows' brains during this phase of the sequence was, not surprisingly, the pallium.</p><p>Overall, the study may eliminate the layered cerebral cortex as a requirement for higher intelligence. As we learn more about the intelligence of crows, we can at least say with some certainty that it would be wise to avoid <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/26/science/26crow.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">angering one</a>.</p>