We connect with family we’ve not seen for years through the social web; we stay in touch with business partners who could potentially live thousands of miles away; we generate leads for ourselves and for others. But the most fundamental characteristic common to these three uses – and we’re ignoring the selfish reasons some people use the social web – is CONVERSATION!
Without conversation, the “virtual” online relationships begin to falter. The Communications Factors are key to the establishment and care – nurturing, if you will – of the relationships we foster through the Social Web. Conversations, by nature, are two-way exchanges of information. Did you get that? We said “two-way!” There are literally millions of blogs on the social web – having to do with anything from needlepoint to the latest and greatest technological advances in the areas of neuroscience or stem cells – and many, if not most, are simply monologues.
In order for the conversations to fuel innovations, they cannot be monologues! Granted, monologues can fuel innovation, but just think about how much faster innovation occurs when two or more brilliant minds get together. Possibilities are endless!
The key to engaging brilliant minds
Expand yourmind. Think about things, innovations, and characteristics of an area of interest by reading an innovative book or blog which actually makes you question what you have been taught. Then, find some colleagues whose opinions differ from your own. Make yourself think “OUTSIDE THE BOX!”
Join (or start) a group that meets to simply talk about something which interests you and your friends. Have passionate/heated conversations with others and try to “win” them over to your way of thinking. No matter what the outcome of the (in)formal group is, remember to shake hands (hug, kiss, whatever) when the conversation is over and do NOT begrudge someone else for having an opinion other than your own.
Utilize the various platforms online (mentioned above) to create relationships with others. Have honest, thought-provoking conversations with people. Connect, collaborate and share. Establish yourself – through conversations you have with others on the web – as an expert in a specific area.
We now have the ability to connect anywhere through our smart-phones. Wireless connectivity is becoming more mainstream than ever before, and it is just one tool with which we can engage the social web.