I’ve been trying to come up with a way to deal with the firehose on Google+ while discovering new and interesting people to follow. I got myself down to 6 circles, and I think this will work fairly well.
My top 3 circles are Family, Friends and Following. Following is for people I have engaged with or find particularly interesting. (The others are self-explanatory.) I see everything from these circles in my stream and all 3 are fairly small.
Then I have a Circled Me and an Interesting circle. The first one is for people I don’t know who circled me. The second is for people I think might be interesting to follow who didn’t circle me. I’ve turned the volume down on those circles and occasionally, I check them directly. If someone from one of those circles engages with me or posts consistently interesting content, they get moved to Following.
Finally, there’s a circle of people who are relevant to my work, which I can direct certain on-topic posts to.
Simplicity seems to be the way to go in Google+. If you like what I post here, you’ll probably like what I post there as well.