My world feels pretty big these days! I recently celebrated a huge milestone (for me) when I accepted my 5000th LinkedIn connection to really expand my world.
Think of LinkedIn like a big pyramid. You are at the top. Those you are connected to are your 2nd level connections. People who are connected to your 2nd level connections are your 3rd level connections. People you don’t know yet are at the bottom of the pyramid, just waiting to join the party.
If you have only a few connections, then your world of 2nd and 3rd level connections is very small. It’s like living in a small town. You know a few people well but you might be recycling the same conversations and ideas simply because your options are fewer.
Fewer Contacts = Smaller World = Fewer Opportunities
If you live in a large town, you have greater opportunity to interact with more people and ideas simply because your world is bigger. You might have to work harder to meet those people because they are spread out over a larger geography, but you can generate more opportunity if you reach out.
More contacts = Larger World = More Opportunities
I’m not advocating small town or large city life. I see plenty of wonderful reasons to live in a small town. My point is sometimes bigger can offer more opportunities.
LinkedIn is like that. LinkedIn can be a tool to reach out and find opportunity in a bigger world, if you extend your reach by adding connections.
Recently I reworked Brian’s LinkedIn profile to optimize his keywords and personal brand. His profile looks great. He is presenting the best possible version of himself to support his job search. But even after all that work to improve his profile, Brian is still not getting much traction.
Could it be related to the fact that Brian only has 50 connections? You bet.
Compare Brian’s 50 connections to my 5000 connections. Do you think more people look at or can find my LinkedIn profile? What can that increased exposure bring in the way of new opportunities? We can do the math on that.
The average LinkedIn user has 400 connections. If we assume that our 1st level connections each have the average 400 connections, 2nd level to us, how do Brian’s profile and my profile interact with the world?
Brian’s 50 connections X 400 = 20,000 2nd level connections
Katherine’s 5000 connections X 400 = 2,000,000 2nd level connections
Who has the greater access to people, information, ideas and job leads? This access represents the value in having more connections.
I am not just accumulating connections. I work hard to start conversations with each new connection to learn about them and see how I can be helpful. Those added connection have expanded my world and I’ve learned more than I ever thought possible!
I am proud of my 5000th LinkedIn connection! His name is Rob. For being my 5000th connection, Rob received an Interview Doctor eBook and access to our new online training program, Inside Scoop on LinkedIn for Job Seekers! Let the celebration begin!!
What are you doing to expand your world? Are you meeting more people to increase your opportunities? If not, what is holding you back?