Does your network challenge your point of view?

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I have found when your network is mostly people whose backgrounds and experiences are similar to yours, it’s unlikely to help you foster new ideas or hear additional solutions. 

Starting Brigadoon was a tool to help me foster new ideas or hear additional solutions. 

As someone who provides professional advice and communications services to top-flight executives working at the intersection of globalization, disruption, and politics, I need to have information coming to me from numerous sources.

It is essential for me to diversify my network by connecting with people whose viewpoints, insights and experiences differ from my own. In particular, engaging people who will challenge my assumptions and biases - from ideas on commerce and culture to politics.

However, organizing events for entrepreneurs and thought leaders is a lot of work and is a long-term investment.

Quicker, more actionable tactics can be as easy as changing your daily conversations and working with existing groups to help expand your network.

For example, when I meet someone new, I try to learn what we have a common but move quickly to talk about what we don’t have in common and get them talking by asking them questions.

Another idea, if you’re struggling to expand your network in the traditional ways, create a reason to bring a diverse group together.

For example, bring Brigadoon to your hometown. This will give you a chance to utilize our network while you are reinforcing your network in a friendly environment. Even easier, start a monthly book club which will provide you with a chance hear a variety of perspectives, as well as to read authors you wouldn’t usually pick up.

Making your network rich and divergent will help you develop a foundation that will both inspire you as well as push you to expand your thinking.

A network that helps you better manage and understand the emerging issues shaping commerce and culture is essential in today's competitive and global business environment.

Happy network building.

-- Marc A. Ross

Marc A. Ross specializes in thought leader communications and events for senior executives working at the intersection of globalization, disruption, and politics