“If you want a world class network, you need to invest in world class people.” – Jayson Gaignard
If you’re familiar with Dunbar’s number then you know that research has shown human beings can have at most 150 stable social relationships. Beyond that we may fail to manage or fully process relationships on a cognitive level. Anything more that 150 and we simply can’t compute.
So how we prioritize our peer group as far as which relationships we nurture and deepen is really important, especially if you’re a growth-oriented entrepreneur. But when folks hear the words ‘prioritization’ and ‘relationships’ in the same sentence it tends to have negative connotations.
Do not assume that because I am arguing for selective investments I am suggesting that we evaluate our peer group according to some kind of totem pole of success. In no way am I suggesting that some people are more valuable than others, just that they may be to you, and that could be for lots of different reasons.
And I’m also not advocating that you cut people off in order to strategically decide which relationships to nurture. In fact, you should never do that. Unless someone is a real liability to you and your peer group, avoid burning bridges at all cost. As the saying goes, be nice to people on your way up because you’ll meet them again on your way down.
My point is, prioritizing relationships isn’t necessarily a negative or self serving thing to do. In fact, it’s a very important thing to do if you’re serious about investing in and nurturing the relationships that matter most.
The secret to building a world class network? Go wide in your networking and narrow in your nurturing. Just like the saying about productivity… that the best way to get things done is to have fewer things to do. The best way to nurture relationships is to have fewer relationships to nurture. It’s about depth, not breadth.
Learn about the 5 categories of relationships and practical steps that you can take to nurture and deepen each one in this episode of Community Made…