There is power in your direct network. In fact, every individual, every person you may come in contact with is a potential business partner. Don't get me wrong, you must tread carefully and watch your privacy and your very safety, but when one begins with the end in mind - career management, long term goals, financial considerations, filling new requisitions, and on and on and on, one must be aware how valuable a network trully is.
The larger one's network the more apt they are to fill that hard to find skill, as a friend of a friend can pave the way for a critical contact that can either lead to a new business opportunity, open doors for greater collaboration, and onward. These days staffing is about as much fun as it can be, there is nothing better than opening the door for someone else, and being the catalyst to a fill. Staffing get's in one's blood and core sense of being.
Every candidate, every hiring manager, every family contact, or prior contact across the broad spectrum of one's very existence, has the potential to open the doors for powerful career opportunities, and for that matter candidate pipelining and talent propulsion.
I can't stress enough the value of one's own network - as I look at LinkedIn, having come to 2800 direct connections and continuing to grow, I can't help but be in awe as I am better able to find the needle in a haystack hiding on a professional network, that just continues to add new professionals daily. Now at 115,000,000 isn't it incredible when your network gives you an uncanny view of those connected to you. Cherish your contacts, and play cleanly on Facebook, and use a conservative approach to what you post online - indeed you may not be able to fully retract a mistake, today more than ever candidates, hiring managers, companies and more are trolling your profile and finding out about you. Today, I have it set up where I can view who has viewed my LinkedIn Profile - by so doing I can find out who is looking me up and where they come from, yes that's right you can view who's been looking at you:
I love it. I have a paid account, and how I love seeing who's been trolling my profile and viewing my background. It certainly is interesting. This information can show how effective your search engine optimization strategy is in your profile.
In so many words it is so wise to be safe in your use of certain media - your posting of pictures, how you present yourself etc. Today, be wise and courteous in your netiquette, and open doors and become one with a reputation for being the one who gives career advice and makes the case for your network to trust you. As one does so, success in sourcing, and recruiting, and finding new candidates who you would never find, will be clamouring and knocking at your door as you maintain a longterm business strategy and manage your network with the utmost care and harvest the fruit therein by being the one people want to propel themselves to by being engaging and wise in how you manage each network - online and offline.