Self-Motivation
David Goggins
Former Navy Seal
Career Development
Bryan Cranston
Actor
Critical Thinking
Liv Boeree
International Poker Champion
Emotional Intelligence
Amaryllis Fox
Former CIA Clandestine Operative
Management
Chris Hadfield
Retired Canadian Astronaut & Author
Learn
from the world's big
thinkers
Start Learning

How to Manage Your Network

Linda Hill:  What do I mean by managing your network?  I don’t mean spend time necessarily on LinkedIn or other kinds of social networking pieces of the puzzle.  What I mean by that are a couple of things.  First off, organizations are inherently political entities, and really managing your network is about managing the political dynamics associated with all organizational life.  And for sure, one very specific piece of that puzzle is what you want to do is think about, “Who am I dependent on to get my job done?”  The higher up you go in an organization, the more dependencies you have.  You always want to over-estimate your dependencies.  So think about who you’re dependent on to get your job done.  And then you have to ask yourself, have I built the right relationships with those people?  Do they really “trust me”?  Right?   Do we have mutual expectations, can I influence them, can they influence me?  If the answers are no to those questions, then you have not built the right kind of relationships.

One of the things I’ve seen in my own experience is that we always talk about how power corrupts, but powerlessness corrupts also.  So indeed, unless you have thought about who you’re dependent on and you have figured out ways that you can build that mutual influence with the network piece that really refers to your peers and your bosses, or people outside the organization over whom you don’t have formal authority but who in fact you need them to do things for you in order for you to be successful, or your team to be successful, you’ve got to make sure you’ve spent the time managing those relationships.

So you can’t kind of ignore that, though, and say, “I don’t just have time for it.”  What you need to do is periodically make a picture or make a list: these are the dependencies, these are the critical relationships.  Do I have any relationship with these people?  Have I cultivated those relationships?  And you need to be honest about what the state of affairs is.  It depends on the job, but some proportion of your time should be spent on managing those relationships.  And if you’re not spending time on that, then your team cannot be successful no matter how wonderful the culture of that team and how much time you sort of worked to get that right, because your team won’t have the right resources to get done what it needs to get done

Are you cultivating the critical relationships at work?

LIVE ON MONDAY | "Lights, camera, activism!" with Judith Light

Join multiple Tony and Emmy Award-winning actress Judith Light live on Big Think at 2 pm ET on Monday.

Big Think LIVE

Add event to calendar

AppleGoogleOffice 365OutlookOutlook.comYahoo

Keep reading Show less

Study details the negative environmental impact of online shopping

Frequent shopping for single items adds to our carbon footprint.

Photo by George Frey/Getty Images
Politics & Current Affairs
  • A new study shows e-commerce sites like Amazon leave larger greenhouse gas footprints than retail stores.
  • Ordering online from retail stores has an even smaller footprint than going to the store yourself.
  • Greening efforts by major e-commerce sites won't curb wasteful consumer habits. Consolidating online orders can make a difference.
Keep reading Show less

The key to better quality education? Make students feel valued.

Building a personal connection with students can counteract some negative side effects of remote learning.

Future of Learning
  • Not being able to engage with students in-person due to the pandemic has presented several new challenges for educators, both technical and social. Digital tools have changed the way we all think about learning, but George Couros argues that more needs to be done to make up for what has been lost during "emergency remote teaching."
  • One interesting way he has seen to bridge that gap and strengthen teacher-student and student-student relationships is through an event called Identity Day. Giving students the opportunity to share something they are passionate about makes them feel more connected and gets them involved in their education.
  • "My hope is that we take these skills and these abilities we're developing through this process and we actually become so much better for our kids when we get back to our face-to-face setting," Couros says. He adds that while no one can predict the future, we can all do our part to adapt to it.
Keep reading Show less

Neom, Saudi Arabia's $500 billion megacity, reaches its next phase

Construction of the $500 billion dollar tech city-state of the future is moving ahead.

Credit: Neom
Technology & Innovation
  • The futuristic megacity Neom is being built in Saudi Arabia.
  • The city will be fully automated, leading in health, education and quality of life.
  • It will feature an artificial moon, cloud seeding, robotic gladiators and flying taxis.
Keep reading Show less

Childhood sleeping problems may signal mental disorders later in life

Chronic irregular sleep in children was associated with psychotic experiences in adolescence, according to a recent study out of the University of Birmingham's School of Psychology.

Personal Growth
  • We spend 40 percent of our childhoods asleep, a time for cognitive growth and development.
  • A recent study found an association between irregular sleep patterns in childhood and either psychotic experiences or borderline personality disorder during teenage years.
  • The researchers hope their findings can help identify at-risk youth to improve early intervention.
  • Keep reading Show less
    Quantcast