Your Strategic Network

Your Strategic Network

Harvard Business Review writers Linda Hill & Kent Lineback recently wrote an article titled “The Three Networks You Need.” Here’s a quick overview of each network:

– Your Operational Network – People you lean on to complete your day-to-day work within your job role.

– Your Developmental Network – People you lean on for emotional support.

– Your Strategic Network – People who work on the outskirts of your profession who dabble in the worlds that surround your own.

The article argues that operational and developmental networks happen naturally, but strategic networks don’t but are equally as important because…

“the forces that drive change in your field will probably come from outside your current world.”

Education is known for its walled gardens, but with shifting times and increasing external pressures, the need for Educators to build up their strategic network is extremely important so they can better be prepared for the outside forces that are driving change in their field. This theme was echoed at the last Student Affairs conference I attended:

It’s an honor to have so many Educators include me in their strategic network and respect my opinion and thoughts even though I don’t work day-to-day at an institution. Instead, my time is spent working on identity development, technology, social media, and online engagement with hundreds of institutions and businesses. My view, and world, are different but often very relevant to the shift happening in Education. Some value my view, others refuse to listen.

I consider many within the #SAchat community to be a part of my strategic network because they DO work day-to-day at an institution. I lean on many educators almost daily for advice and suggestions. Some of my best ideas come from people who are totally outside the work I do.

What about you? If you were to map out your strategic network, what people from what worlds would you want to include?

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