The Six Degrees Of Separation Myth

17 Dec

If you have ever heard that you are six degrees of separation from anyone you want to meet in the world I think you may have been misled.  If you are not familiar, six degrees says that if you want to meet someone famous like Kevin Bacon, and you have a friend Joe, he knows Bob, who knows Steve, up to six people.  You are no more that six “chances” of relationships away from whoever you want to meet.  Let’s discuss why this is a myth.

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What if you could actually connect with anyone you wanted?   Sounds too good to be true right?  I’m not saying it’s not possible, I’m saying it shouldn’t take you 6 chances of meeting someone who knows someone, who knows someone, etc.  It’s probably more like two to three.  It’s not likely that you could hop through 6 different people, probably 5 you are just meeting and get introductions;  with our closely connected world through social networks your next great connection is closer than you think.
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We’re more connected today with online social networking than ever before.  If you want to connect with almost any celebrity you can find their twitter account and sent them a message and it’s likely you’ll get a reply.
This doesn’t mean they will spend one on one time with you or meet with you for coffee, but it all starts with an interaction.

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Here are 7 things you can do to strengthen your network, to earn your way into getting introductions to the right people.

1. Make your overall philosophy to build relationships first
You will always stand out and be welcome to other peoples introductions if you put relationships first and get to know people before you jump in about you and your business.

2. Strive for greatness
Do a great job with your existing clients, be memorable and over deliver. Even if someone looks at your business, product or services treat them with respect and show them you are great at what you do.

3. Deliver
When you do have a client be sure to deliver on exactly what you promised, no less. Be sure not to over promise what you are offering them just to get them to take action. Be a long term thinker.

4. What happens after counts even more
Be sure to provide impeccable service after they become your client. I had this happen when I purchased a new vehicle recently, they sales rep called me about 3 days after just to make sure I was happy; it was remarkable service and it makes a great impression. This is something I strive to do every time and it’s rare that someone follows up after you give them money, it shows they care. I’d recommend you do the same.

5. Be a Go-Giver
Be willing to do things to help others build their business. Send them introductions to people who may be good referral partners or suggest ways they can cross-promote with others. I do this quite often and people really appreciate it. Add value to others and don’t expect anything in return. Don’t worry, you’ll be rewarded far better long term than just trying to get something for yourself right away.

6. Respect
Be sure you are liked and well respected with everyone you come in contact with. People are more willing to introduce you to others who are close to them if they feel like you’ll respect them; usually how you treat others is the way they will assume that you will treat someone you meet from an introduction.

7. Community
Be willing to get involved in the community. This is not only to help you feel good about yourself, but its a great way to get to know other people, give back and contribute. Offer those you network with to join you and it could be a great activity to get to know someone better. Also, you just never know who you will meet at a community project.

We’ve gone over 7 ways to not only expand your network but also strengthen the one you have. I hope these tips have helped you.

Leave a comment if you’ve had a positive experience with any of these 7 steps and how it worked out.

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Comments

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9 thoughts on “The Six Degrees Of Separation Myth

    • for sure. I’m amazed all the time how just a friend of a friend knows common people you’d never expect. yep, it’s amazing how we’re all connected @facebook-1403844994:disqus

  1. Awesome, Jeremy! And I concur 100%. In my life, I’ve found that meeting people often is 1 – 2 degrees particularly in light of social media. Not everyone is approachable and not everyone cares to connect, but in today’s world, there are lots of possibilities out there!

  2. Great points Jeremy. It’s amazing we can connect with just about anyone through social media. I think #3 is essential and would add consistently deliver great content/produces/services.

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