On the surface, networks can look the same, and one might also say that coalitions, collaboratives and alliances are simply different forms of networks. While this is true, it is also the case that not every collaborative form maximizes network effects, including small world reach, rapid dissemination, adaptability, resilience and system change.
In this regard, experience shows that a big difference maker is when participants in a network (or an organization, for that matter) embrace new ways of seeing, thinking, and doing. The following revised list continues to evolve as our own practice and understanding does, and it speaks to a number of network principles to guide thinking and action:
- Adaptability instead of control
- Contribution before credentials
- Giving first, not taking
- Resilience and redundancy instead of rock stardom
- Diversity and divergence rather than the usual suspects and forced agreement
- Intricacy and flow not bottlenecks and hoarding
- Self-organization and emergence rather than permission and the pursuit of perfection
- Shift focus from core to the periphery
- From working in isolation to working with others and/or out loud
- From “Who’s the Leader?” to “We’re the Leaders!”
Ogden, Curtis. Thinking Like a Network 2.0. Blog Post. October 24, 2017.