Jennifer B. Davis
I have mentioned before the great book entitled "Setting the Table" by Danny Meyer. He writes about building and nurturing relationships with customers, something he calls connecting the dots.

As Danny writes, "Dots are information. The more information you collect, the more so you can make meaningful connections that can make other people feel good and give you an edge in business. Using wahterver information I've collected to gather guests together in a spirit of shared experience is what I call connecting the dots. If I don't turn over the rocks, I won't see the dots. If I don't collect the dots, I can't connect the dots. If I don't know that someone works, say, for a magazine whose managing editor I happen to know, I've lost a chance to make a meaningful connection that could enhance our relationship with the guest and the guest's relationshi with us. The information is there. You just have to choose to look."

This concept really resonated with me. On a personal level, I have found that when I am learning something, the best test of understanding is when I can connect the learning to another discipline or something else that I have experienced. Sometimes I imagine that I can feel the connections in the brain developing when this occurs.

On a professional level, I have seen the power of connections. When one relationship or bit of information can be leveraged to help someone else. The circles of influence and connection growing. You can see it happen in qualitative and measurable ways. One of my favorites is LinkedIn. From my profile at you can see links to people I have worked with and questions I have answered to try to assist others, as well as information about me and my experience that might be useful in us working together. Lots of dots there to be collected and connected.

If you are on LinkedIn and know me, please send me an invitation to connect! If you are not, you should definitely check it out!
The beautiful photo (showing the connection between dots in a store window and the reflection of square windows in an adjacent building) came from AnnPar on Flickr.
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