Thanks for asking. I have searched the net for a suitable answer to your question and didn't find one I liked, so I am answering your question on my blog (http://crusaderx.blogspot.com ) so that I can share this answer with others.
What is an "open networker"?
This term comes from a staunch debate amongst those who use social networking sites like LinkedIn, Facebook, and plaxo to meet new people.
This in my opinion spawns from the diametrically opposed opinions regarding business networking in general.
One side claims that their list of names is like a pie. Imagine the most expensive, rare, and hard to buy pie that everyone would claim they had died and gone to heaven after eating. This is the sort of pie and each person in their black book of names represents a slice in this pie. When they happen upon a new person, they are very open to have this new person share names and connections with them, but they feeling isn't mutual and they don't want to share from their precious names list. In my opinion, this type of thinking comes from the idea that by sharing a slice of their pie or a connection in their network that somehow they will have less value in their network because after all there is only so much pie in the universe.
The opposition claims that their network is more like a muscular system which only grows stronger with constant consistent use. To this crowd, it does no good to just know someone and possibly know their contact information unless you are able to introduce them to others you meet and know. In this camp, they want to dance and they didn't come to the dance to be a wall flower.
I know many successful millionaires, multi-millionaires, and billionaires even and I can tell you that even amongst these there are some in both camps.
So, "what is an open networker?" you ask. Well, in my opinion to be an open networker is the only way to live. There is no use in going to a dance unless you are prepared to meet the people there and risk getting hurt by those who wont dance with you if you ask and wouldn't ask you even if they had the chance. An open networker thus by definition will err on the side of connecting with anyone and everyone and building a relationship with them despite the risk involved as they believe in abundance and not lack and that there will always be more good returned to you when you give. The open networker believes that when you toss your bread upon the water it comes back to you 100 fold, pressed down and shaken together.
Through my 1 and 1/2 year journey of social networking I have been an open networker, I have taught others to be open networkers, and I have seen extraordinary value because of it. I have added monthly revenues of over $4 million, and I have also been able to help raise over $4 million for the orphanage charity of a friend. I have been able to do all of this by being an open networker and growing my network by an average of over 6 new connections a day to the point that I now have over 3900 direct connecitons on LinkedIn and many more elsewhere.
So, an open networker choice may not be right for everyone and for some may be impossible to get their heads around, but for me it has been the right one. That is because of what it has meant monetarily to our firm and to my friend's charity, but also to the many many lives I have been able to impact in a positive manner I believe.
So, Mark, and everyone else reading this on my blog. I pray you understand where I am coming from and if you are open to the idea of connecting with a guy like me that you will accept my invitation. Everyone else, if you want to connect with me, I'd be happy to connect. Just invite me from my LinkedIn profile at http://www.linkedin.com/in/ericstandlee and I will accept, but I am out of invites so I cannot invite anyone else. Apparently LinkedIn policy is that I can only invite 3000 people to connect with me.
No matter what you think, you receive what you believe, so believe wisely,
On Dec 25, 2007 1:12 AM, Mark wrote:
What is an "open networker"??