I was first introduced to LinkedIn in 2005. Soon after a reduction in force at my company, one of my laid-off subordinates asked for my endorsement. In order to do her this well-deserved favor, I had to sign-up and create my account on LinkedIn; then I pretty much forgot about it. I had a one-track mind in my career, and I felt that LinkedIn was just a “distractAion”. If I wasn’t looking for a job, why did I need it? And then my perception changed as I realized it’s a great professional network where creditable information and mutual respect can be shared.
What I liked about LinkedIn as a useful tool was its starting profile template with an output looking like a well-designed document. Once I discovered that, I did an experiment and pulled together a presentable PDF to use as curriculum vitae(CV) with endorsements from people with whom I had worked. It was fun getting in touch with people with whom I had not spoken for a while, and learning their perspectives. It brought tears and laughs.
Many people are skilled at handling and filing paper. I have never been one of them. I tend to misfile important documents, lose them, stack them on an ever-expanding "inbox", spill coffee on them and - usually - not be able to find them when I need to. So, when it became possible to go paperless in the last decade or so - I jumped on it!
Now, when I receive anything written or typed on paper, I follow this simple process:
Is it something I need to save?
As business leaders, we need clear policies and incentives on how employees and partners should access and use these digital media in away that reflects well on our brand. Coming from our TechZecs position of maximizing employee/partner empowerment and trust, here are some ideas indeveloping those policies:
Forget trying to withhold access - it doesn't work for Middle-East despots and it won't work for you. With smart phones and similar devices, anyone can get anywhere on the internet at any time. So let's use a more common sense approach.