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LinkedIn, Microsoft, and Why Personal Networks Still Matter


Microsoft's decision to buy LinkedIn shows how growth in technology comes through affiliation. In the deal, LinkedIn will gain new connections to systems, and Microsoft to people. Here are a few of our articles about the power of the ideas that underlie LinkedIn’s business model — including one by the company's cofounder Reid Hoffman on a theory of personal integrity that he developed in high school.



Connections with Integrity

The venture capitalist who cofounded LinkedIn reveals the surefire system that he has used since high school for evaluating potential business relationships.

As a venture capitalist, and the cofounder of the leading online professional networking site, I am keenly aware of the value of good alliances. Indeed, my interest in the nature of alliances began long ago, when I was a freshman in high school. Thinking about what I would do with my life, I came up with a perfect plan. My friends and I would all seek positions of power. One of us would be president of the United States; another would be president of IBM; another would run a powerful nonprofit. We’d coordinate our efforts and change the world together. Seems like a lofty ambition for a high schooler, I know, but we truly believed that if we joined forces, anything in life was possible.

Thinking now about the kinds of people who make good allies, I realize that over the years I’ve come to group the behavior of my friends and acquaintances into four categories based on the way they manage the relationships...

Read more:
http://www.strategy-business.com/article/00104

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