In network theory, each additional node increases the number of connections that can be made.
For example, when you have two people, you can make one connection between them. With three people, you can make three connections. With four, the number of possible connections is six. When you have five people, it’s 10. [Note for nerds: the formula for the number of links with n nodes is n(n-1)/2]
Similarly, removing a node causes a significant loss in the number of possible connections.
If you’re working in a group of five and you decide to skip out on a meeting, you might think it’s no big deal because 80% of the team is still there.
But in fact, while a group of five can have 10 connections, a group of four can only have six. That’s a 40% drop (and for the person who missed the meeting, the loss is 100%).
You’re more important than you think.