Management Articles


The Significance of the Network

By: Thomas W. McKee

Thomas W. McKee is president of Advantage Point Systems, Inc., a staff development and change management firm. Thomas is an author, motivational speaker, trainer and leader. He has spoken to over 1/2 million people and taught the Advantage Point System method of change management to over 100,000 managers in companies like Hewlett Packard, Ernst and Young, Procter and Gamble, the California Department of General Services, and the IRS. ; For information about the Advantage Point System of managing change see

Kaplan's theory of crisis intervention states that when stressors outweigh the support systems, people are in crisis. Changes in the marketplace are often some of the most significant stressors that cause crisis; however, supportive teambuilding can balance the crisis scale. A crucial step in teambuilding is building an effective network.

Evaluate Your Network

Take the survey in the next column. What do the answers to the questions tell you about your network?

Does the same name keep popping up? Do you need to expand your network? Are there some holes? Put a check by the areas you need to expand.
Who do you go to...
  • For friendship?
  • For support?
  • For recreation?
  • For advice?
  • For mentoring?
  • For learning?
  • For new ideas?
  • For inspiration?
  • For affirmation?
Building a network is a crucial teambuilding step during times of change.

Characteristics of a Network: Keep in mind the following characteristics when you build a network.
  • Network is not just a noun, but a verb that signifies action.
  • A network is not static. It changes.
  • A network reaches beyond your comfort zone.
  • A network should widen your experience.
  • A network is based on building relationships.
  • In times of change, networks are channels of support.

© 1998 Advantage Point Systems Inc.

Other Articles by Thomas W. McKee

The author assumes full responsibility for the contents of this article and retains all of its property rights. ManagerWise publishes it here with the permission of the author. ManagerWise assumes no responsibility for the article's contents.


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