So it is pretty common that when you need something; a resource, a person, a restaurant review, etc you can spend some time online doing some research. As part of this, it is pretty common to ask friends for their recommendations. Yelp, Trip Advisor, Angie’s list, etc are nice but I much prefer to trust friends from various places than strangers. Now people have always been doing this but they likely asked them over the phone or while at a social gathering. Plenty of people still do it this way and many, myself included, have added in using Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to also gain some insights. It’s still cool to do both but not necessary.
Asking people for help is not modern but using online tools is.
The thing here is by using online tools you speed things up dramatically. That’s a good thing for everyone except those that struggle to keep up. It’s also a bad thing for those that haven’t realized how things are done online is a bit different then the “old days,” you know like 8 or so years ago 🙂 See asking on-line opens opportunities for discussions and interactions with people you may not have normally asked. THIS IS AWESOME! That random painter who sealed your deck may have just went out to that new restaurant you are thinking about going to. Many times our assumptions and basic correlations would eliminate this serendipity from occurring, not anymore. But unless you ask how will you know?
See asking through something like Facebook is a personal request because you are opening up yourself to public discussion. You are sharing something private you are looking for with people that on varying levels you trust. It is just like opening your phone book accept you get to call everyone all at once. Heck if you called everyone in your contact list and waited you would not get anything done. This makes an impractical task pretty practical.
If your feelings get hurt because you were not called “first” or you feel like your opinion is not being considered that is a “you” problem. Please don’t get in the way of serendipity. Accept the fact that you were “chosen” when I allowed you to be an online friend. Accept the fact that me being willing to share online is an opportunity. It gives me the chance to keep up with people who can bring value to your life now and later. It’s a chance for you to introduce me to one of your friends who I may need or be able to share in the future.
Many times collecting money in the short term is worth a lot less than staying in touch for the long-term deal that may be waiting.
Oh yeah, so when you are giving information on-line actually give information. See if I wanted to ignore your advice and go to Google I would but I didn’t so now it is your turn. PLEASE include that person contact information in your reply. Including a link to their business is easy as well. If in your network you have “a number of people who can help…” SHARE THEM HERE.
Me asking publicly is permission to post your friends’ information.
I am asking on-line to save time not to add more things to my to-do list. Heck, you can e-mail me directly and include the information or even make an introduction to that contact via e-mail. I might have already called the people I want to call and this is just a little extra. Besides, the reality is I am calling on friends for most things and acquaintances for others. That doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with you, maybe I’ll call next time. Probably not, but maybe.
We are all busy and hopefully all trying to get as much out of this finite amount of time called life that we possibly can. Please consider adding to this time and making it more valuable.
Just some thoughts.