Leverage Your Network


Friend of a Friend by David Burkus

Have you read Friend of a Friend: Understanding The Hidden Networks That Can Transform Your Life and Your Career by David Burkus? David is a friend and an accomplished author, speaker, podcaster, and professor. In each of his three books, he questions commonly held thoughts and ideas, and he always challenges his readers to think on a deeper level. This book will get you thinking and acting differently when you think about your circle or network of friends.

David uses compelling stories and in-depth research to connect ideas regarding networks, as well as how people use their networks of friends and acquaintances to move their career or their business forward.

The first chapter talks about the strength of weak ties. David engages the reader with an interesting story and then makes the point that we often avoid our weak ties, but those weak ties may contain the true power of our network. Often, the people closest to us know each other. The closer our connections are, the more homogeneous they become. We go to church with and work with people who are like us. Over time, our closest friends transform us a little and we shape them too. Therefore, our closest friends often agree with us and approach problems the same way, using the same logic, and achieving similar results.

“Most of the strong ties in our network are connected to each other. They are often so tightly clustered that information known by one person is already known by everyone else in that cluster. In contrast, our weak ties often build a bridge from one cluster to another and thus give us access to new information.”David Burkus, Friend of a Friend

The book makes a compelling argument for exposing ourselves to and investing in diverse networks. But this isn’t a book about diversity. Rather, David goes on to give practical advice for building, maintaining, and growing networks of people. In fact, toward the end of the book, he points out that we don’t have networks, we’re part of a global network. Ties between people can be kept active or even restarted in ways that benefit both parties and make the world much smaller.

I’ve listened to the audio twice (so far) and just purchased an eBook so I can mark it up and make notes. The ideas in this book are important for our careers, our businesses and even for the impact we will make in the world. What are you trying to do? What is your magnum opus? You will achieve it with greater ease, and you will make a bigger impact when you embrace the concepts in this important book. Check it out! And connect with David at www.davidburkus.com.


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