Monday, April 02, 2007

The MLPF Experiment

I'm a big fan and avid user of LinkedIn. That said, I've been very deliberate in how I've been building up my network. For the most part, I've only been connecting with those who I have had some level of prior interaction with. I have also been strongly encouraging our recruiters to start using LinkedIn, and to connect with me to take advantage of my 1st & 2nd degree connections.

To keep my network growing, I have been committed to adding at least 5 new connections a week, but my ability to do that with those who I have had prior interactions with has become limited. My extended network, although at almost 2 million now, has also slowed in its growth. I have wanted to keep this growing, but how?

Several months ago I signed up with the MyLinkedinPowerForum (MLPF) to learn more about how to maximize my networking through this great tool. People use MLPF for a number of reasons, primarily to bounce ideas off each other or to identify specific opportunities to connect. The forum's moderator, Vincent Wright, does a great job of keeping this forum on track, and in addition, added in a formatted way for new members to introduce themselves. I was hesitant to do a 'Micro-Introduction' myself as I was not ready yet to expand my network beyond those I 'knew'. Yesterday however, I took the plunge.

As you can see from my intro, I have tried to keep the intent of my intro clear and direct. As a result, this morning I have been able to connect with a number of new LinkedIn members who I otherwise might not of connected with otherwise. The key for me is keeping the new connections relevant. I actually had to write back to a couple of those who wanted to connect to ask them how they felt the connection would be mutually-beneficial, as their message to me, and their profile, did not make that clear.

The power of LinkedIn IMO is it's ability to expand your network based on trusted 1st degree connections. This step moved me beyond my initial strategy, so it will be interesting to see what the end results of this action will be. Any way I can help facilitate connections, or connect with others who have mutual interests is a benefit. Have we linked yet? If not, and you feel we should, lets get LinkedIn today!

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At 3:41 PM, Blogger Pete said...

Ben, you never cease to amaze with new ideas. This is the kind of LI forum I've been looking for! Thanks again.

At 7:49 AM, Blogger Ben said...

Pete - Can't lay claim to this idea being 'new', but it is a good forum nonetheless. The experiment has gone well so far, about 36 hours into it. I've added 11 new 1st degree connections (all relevant, even declined a few invites), 3K+ 2nd degree connections and 50K+ 3rd degree connections. Very close to the 300 1st degree/2Mil 3rd degree connection threshhold now.


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