Establishing true professional connections

Neworking sites and forums for professionals are becoming less social.

Here’s the reality.  People you met at a conference or at a networking event over coffee, your coworkers, old classmates -- they all count as ‘contacts.’  You may have plenty of contacts, but do you have true connections?  Do your contacts remember you?  Could they be a resource for you?  Do you remember them and will help if they ask?

Most people know that contacts are not the same thing as true connections with which you could develop relationships.  As someone said, “relationships live; they grow and die over time”.  Your friend in college or a previous coworker may not take your call so quickly even after a few years.  I am sure we can all relate to that.

Here are some of the complaints that people have voiced about existing networking sites and forums:

  • Too many connection or friend requests that have no relevance to your interests.
  • No real engagement in groups, with people talking over each other or self promoting themselves.
  • No way to establish personal relationships and trust when everything you say is public.
  • Discussion content that may be interesting but not relevant.  Or, posts that appear to provide solutions but really lacking in insights.
  • No way to exchange ideas in depth relative to occupation or professional standing.
  • People you spoke with do not respond to your follow ups.

It’s no surprise, therefore, that the level of engagement in these sites and events is dropping.

Most of the time we want to connect with specific people for specific purposes.  But that is not possible with social networks that are “one size fits all”.

The potential for making true connections is high if there is something in common.  But it requires more than that to begin building trust and long term relationships.  It takes direct conversation, give and take, and genuine and ongoing interaction, all related to topics of mutual interest.

So, here’s a solution…, a virtual business and career networking platform.

On this platform you can…

  • Be matched with people on shared interests relative to your business and/or career; people who would be interested in speaking with you. 
  • Select only those individuals you wish to interact with.  Refine your selection by occupation, professional standing, or a host of other demographic factors.
  • Build and share your personal content library (blogs, videos, etc.) in support of your interests or brand.
  • Create as many personal networks as you like based on specific interests, comprising one or multiple individuals. 
  • Communicate with your connections one-to-one via video or audio call, instant messaging, or webmail.
  • Build your own small advisory or support groups to suit your specific purposes.  Communicate with or video broadcast to your groups in real time.
  • Manage your connections and referrals using an activity manager.  Manage their information, make notes, plan follow ups, and create a calendar to manage your calls.
  • Continually share information to nurture your relationships.  Don’t be seen as the person who reaches out to someone only when you need something from them. 

Unlike social media and physical forums, this platform provides a vehicle to build deeper and real connections and long-term relationships!

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