Change agents, those who catalyse transformations in organisations, often rely on their network to succeed. Studies show that effective change agents maintain three types of networks: open networks, diverse networks, and dynamic networks. Open networks are those with many weak ties and few redundancies, allowing for an expansive reach and the rapid spread of ideas. Diverse networks contain a broad range of individuals from different functions, hierarchies, and organisations. This diversity fosters innovative thinking and the cross-pollination of ideas. Dynamic networks are constantly evolving, with change agents frequently reassessing and updating their connections to ensure they remain relevant and effective.

Change agents also utilise their networks in a unique way. They spend more time than average networking, around 36% of their day, and are more likely to seek out advice and feedback. They also tend to create connections between unconnected people, facilitating the spread of ideas.

While networking is crucial, change agents must also possess the right mindset. They need to be open to new ideas, willing to take risks, and resilient in the face of setbacks. They should also be committed to their cause, as their passion can inspire others to support the change.

Finally, organisations can support change agents by providing networking opportunities, fostering a culture of openness and innovation, and recognising the value of these individuals.

Go to source article: https://hbr.org/2013/07/the-network-secrets-of-great-change-agents