The Power of Connection
“The most important things in life are the connections you make with others”Tom Ford
I have been pondering on the power of connection and the network effect over the last couple of weeks and thought I’d put the fingers to keypad whilst our little boys are watching Mickey’s Christmas!
I truly believe that we are wired to connect and as I’ve written about before in “What makes a good life”, community and positive relationships have been shown to add years to our lives. Connection is all around us, currently being displayed at the airport welcoming lounges around the word as families reunite and between humans and animals as beautifully portrayed in “My Octopus Teacher” on Netflix.
When I googled ‘what is the origin of the word connect?’ the first result shared – “Connect came into English in the 15th century, derived from the Latin ‘conectere’ meaning ‘join together’, which in its turn was formed from ‘com’, meaning ‘together’, and ‘nectere’, meaning ‘to tie or bind’.” (Macmillan Dictionary Blog). I love the notion of ‘join together’, at Tenfold we often talk about being “better together” and that “all of us are smarter than any one of us”.
The Tenfold team just spent three days together in beautiful Fingal Bay for a team offsite after spending months like many working remotely. Two of our newest team members Bre and Jamie had only spent a day or two with the team face to face previously. It was such a joy to hang out, strategize, laugh and cry together! The overall collective feeling on our departure was one of connection after our time together. Another takeaway was that individually we all have our doubts and imposter syndromes yet together we are whole and more than enough.
I’ve found making connections to be one of the most time effective ways to make a positive contribution to the world. Taking that 5 minutes to connect two humans via email, LinkedIn, phone or other medium can have such a long term positive impact on those being connected.
I am ever in awe that the right timing of a connection can be life changing, whether it be helping connect someone to a new role, opportunity, partner, mentor, or best friend.
One leader I admire set himself his own KPI to make 5 connections across his network each week. Can you imagine the compounding and ripple effect of this over time? When we connect others, I believe it increases the likelihood of them paying it forward and doing the same. It also helps open us up to new networks, as I have written about previously, “It’s not who you know but who they know”.
Who could you connect in your network this week? It could positively change a life.
Investing in making our own new connections and social capital keeps life interesting and us learning. At Tenfold we believe in the network effect, a phenomenon whereby increased numbers of people or participants improve the value of a good or service. We have grown to over 800 C Suite Executives in 17 months and it’s amazing to see all the new connections being made for positive impact. These have included setting up CEO postcode walking pals who have become friends, NFP and multinational leaders connecting for new impact, connecting two leadership teams in different sectors to share learning and connecting new to country leaders with local leaders and families in their area. The power of connection was felt very strongly at our first two CEO face to face roundtables and a local community event where there was so much positive energy reconnecting in 3D format. I believe connected intelligence is a critical skill of leadership today.
It’s often shared that you are remembered for how you made people feel rather than what you achieved. In a recent Tenfold Masterclass with Dr Jim Loehr, Jim left us with a reflective question to think about the three words of phases we would like to see written on our tombstones. Jim shared his were “Fully engaged, loving and kind”. What a beautiful combination. I had thought “Enjoyed the journey, seized the day, made a difference”. Reflecting since of the power of connection I may include made loving connections. What would be your three words or phrases?
To finish in some of Jim’s wise words, “How you scale the mountain is more important than the mountain scaling itself.”