I reached a thousand connections on LinkedIn the other day. Given that I almost never connect with someone I don’t know or have not worked with, I consider this a function of my advanced years that I’ve been able to accumulate what is in theory a valuable network.

Of course, there are various tiers to this network. Some of the people in it I actually can’t remember, so I either worked with them very briefly a long time ago or I connected with them when I was under pressure to break my 2 cardinal rules. Others I know better, and others again are part of a small coterie I know very well and would reach out to for help or to give help.

Interestingly, I only realised I was on 998 connections after I had sent out 3 connection requests. I wondered who would be connection number 1,000. Number 999 would be in the top 3 of all my connections influence-wise, and would be a well known name in the Ireland business community. Number 1,000 was someone relatively senior in the UK with whom I have only recently starting working. Number 1,001 is a friend of a friend who has not accepted my request yet.

Getting to a 4-figure network, which I consider to be a genuinely powerful network rather than one of those that is ten times the size and built for the sake of quantity not quality, reminded me how little I currently leverage the network that I have worked so hard to build up over the last 10 or 12 years. I must do better with this important, sleeping giant of an asset…