Saturday, January 31, 2004

TeledyN: Comment on The Power LinkedIn

You can have a lot of casual acquaintances online, but so far as I can tell, tangible relationships require the real world from which the software can augment. FWIW, Thomas and I had a running argument over this once upon a time. In his business, volume is everything, so cold-calls and persistence is (alledgedly) how he got to be rich and famous, like a telemarketer, he just connects to everyone in hopes of finding a sucker prospect for his "disruptive change" business therapy. My business, by contrast, depended intimately on trust: Clients had to trust me to deliver something never before seen, and trust me to the tune of $50-150,000 --- those who did trust me to deliver their never-seens had all met me through my prior contracts, or their senior executives had been referred to me by people they knew very well in the real world. Phone calls usually began with "Your name came up in a conversation yesterday ..." and thus I was lulled into a false sense of job-security in moving to the boonies, foolishly believing that reputation was transferable online ...

when my network was progressivly severed by dot-bomb downsizings, there was no way to create new trust relationships from this distance. These days I can only get offers from con artists or gigs no one else would take.

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