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I only pick up on technological advances after lots of absorbing and practicing. My brain is wired from a different generation---and then some--- and so I usually seem to have a lot of re-wiring and unscrambling to do. While the brain doesn't necessarily improve with age, the good thing about it, I'm told, is that it can improve with use
. This fact alone is motivating. Once I grow accustomed to a new way, more efficient, faster, better, bigger method or technique (& seemingly smaller technology), it's just the joy of playing with new toys and having a lot more friends over ---aka social networking!
Understanding Social Networking
is A LOT about perspective... to be able to grasp what is happening, it is essential to have an understanding of your place in time, not just as a point in history, but as a medium through which we have transported stories and ideas. For the first time since time management became a task, our placement in space brings us into a new work/business arena... in other words, your placement and presence in a cyber-world becomes critical. In a business nutshell, you can not only manage your time without being online/connected, or YOU WILL BE virtually lost in space.
Up until our times, mainstream media has been muzzled (much of it still is), historically, owned and controlled by a few. Now, since about 2001, especially heightened after 911, we have the masses (the many) going mainstream as an organic whole. The social media is converging with the mass media, and beginning to replace a lot of it. This is a huge change in journalism/telling stories of the day, and how we receive information. The whole blogging phenomenon took off around this time, and, with the introduction of MySpace, became mainstream. Then YouTube began generating video. These were the seeds for social transparency, which translates to the astounding revelation that you/your business really can't be anything but authentically YOU! Pat Kitand and Kevin Baer of Domus Consulting Group say: "The key to creating successful philosophies and businesses is to be socially transparent." (This, by the way, is the main work of DOMUS CONSULTING, setting this up for companies). I picture the mix as striving for A CONTINUUM--- a coherent whole, methodically harmonizing what is sound, and hammering out what is discordant or non-synchronous. The speed at which you can develop a network and build a business is rapidly increased, because information travels at high speed and "everyone knows everyone else in a transparent society, and you'll form these serendipitous relationships." (I can personally vouch for this already!) "Communication is being broadcast now and is much more efficient" This doesn't mean that the personal touch is outdated. Not at all. As long as we're human, that just can't happen. It merely informs us of the new phenomenon of "intimacy" being created through social networking, often well ahead of the formal handshake and face-to-face meeting of a new client, colleague, employer, partner, etc..(Before you are HERE, in real time, you are THERE in real space.)
I had a good example of this phenomenon when I attended a conference recently. I had never met most of the atendees, but all day long, we kept recognizing each other because we had met online
. through blogging and other networks. It was amazing to feel the familiarity of the group. That was a huge change from the normal way of attending a conference, chatting with a couple people during a break & exchanging business card---and rarely was in touch with them again. Many of the people I got to know in person at the conference, are now connected to my growing networks. I hope this helps some people understand this a little better. It's taken me awhile!