Wednesday December 17, 2014
By John White, CareerToolBox.com
Several months ago, I met a gentlemen from Pakistan on LinkedIn. Since then we have gotten to know one another by trading messages, and from interacting on each other's posts, etc. We look very different, have different cultures, practice different religions, and come from countries where negative stereotypes of each other are common place on both sides. Despite all that, we have forged a friendship that I have enjoyed very much. I found him to be very friendly, kind, and very knowledgeable regarding business. In addition to my friend in Pakistan, I have made connections with business professionals in countries all over the world. While my current position is a domestic role, I know that my global network will benefit me one day when I am in an international position.
The full potential and power of LinkedIn and its 300 million global members has yet to be realized. The number of members continues to skyrocket around the world which will only create more possibilities and opportunities. To date, we have seen many business connections and friendships cultivated that would not have not been possible prior to LinkedIn. The world economy continues to become more interdependent, and globalization is in full swing. Social networking sites such as LinkedIn are a tremendous catalyst in this process.
Here is a map showing LinkedIn's global membership.
Consider that 67% of LinkedIn's members are located outside of the USA and it is currently available in 22 languages. Additionally, LinkedIn has offices located in Amsterdam, Bangalore, Beijing, Dubai, Dublin, Hong Kong, London, Madrid, Melbourne, Milan, Mumbai, Munich, New Delhi, Paris, Perth, São Paulo, Singapore, Stockholm, Sydney, Tokyo and Toronto. LinkedIn is growing its global presence at a very rapid pace, and I expect it to continue to grow for the foreseeable future.
Consider this from globalization guru and world renowned New York Times columnist, Thomas L. Friedman:
The world is becoming flat. Several technological and political forces have converged, and that has produced a global, Web-enabled playing field that allows for multiple forms of collaboration without regard to geography or distance - or soon, even language.
If you are not currently leveraging LinkedIn to grow a global network, I highly recommend you consider it. Not only will you gain some valuable contacts of business leaders through out the world, but you will make friendships that will expand your horizons. Your mind will be opened to other cultures, and ways of doing business. You may also find that many of the old negative stereotypes you have heard about other countries in the past are unfounded. The time is now to embrace a greater level of global connectivity, understanding of differences within cultures, and increase where you can do business!
I'd like to end this article with a salute to my friend in Pakistan. Thank you Qamar for being my friend! Lets continue to be friends and tear down the horrible stereotypes and prejudices that have plagued this world for so long. I look forward to the day we meetup in person! Just like me Qamar is also publishing on LinkedIn. Check out his publisher page here to see some perspectives that might be outside of your regular sphere of influence: Qamar Ali Khan Publisher Page
If you are as passionate as I am about growing a global network, please send me a connection request or leave links to your social media pages in the comment section. I'd love to someday be able to say that I have connections in every country in the world!
About the Author: John White is a dad, MBA candidate, sales and marketing expert, B2B technology consultant, influential blogger, and creator of viral content. Please visit my profile to connect with me on LinkedIn and on Twitter @juanblanco76.
This is an article I wrote for LinkedIn Pulse that got a lot of shares. Viveka asked me if I would share them on her website as well. Here is the original post.