We all know someone like this: the kind of person who seems to know everybody, and everybody knows them. Malcolm Gladwell wrote a piece “6 Degrees of Lois Weisberg,” about a person who was just like this. Yet Lois Weisberg wasn’t connected to so many people because she had a rare mixture of smarts, energy, sense of humor or other traits, she simply liked lots of people. And all those people liked her “because there is nothing more irresistible to a human being than to be unqualifiedly liked by another.”
Does the same principle apply to enterprise social networking? How simply “liking” and connecting with lots of people on an enterprise social network can make you several degrees closer to your CEO, and perhaps getting that promotion? It’s a rather big question and one that’s not easy to answer, but powerful analytics will show us exactly how much influence a person has within their enterprise social network. With these questions in mind, I decided to take a look at the new tibbr 4 “insights” on TIBCO’s enterprise social network.
At a first glance, the leaderboard shows the top 10 people with the most followers. Unsurprisingly our CEO and Vice President of Sales rank first and second for having the most followers, and several other executives make the cut as well. But, the person ranked third for having the most followers is someone who is not an executive, but someone four tiers down on company hierarchy. This person also happens to rank high on the leaderboard for the most activity (posting messages and liking people’s messages) and has a high influence score as well. While this is just a small example and by no means an empirical study, it shows that someone who is actively participating in an enterprise social network does have a degree of influence, a social power that does not go unnoticed. And perhaps it’s only a matter of time before the CEO notices that person’s influence as well.