As a Second Lifer reading this, and as any Second Lifer reading would think; 'This is common in SL'. How often in SL do you do business with people you don't know in the real world? All the time, right?! How often do you refer a SL associate to another inworld? All the time, right?!
Personally, working with people I haven't met in the real world (but feel comfortable with in Second Life, or online) is my cup of tea. I am glad Second Life has been offering this form of business relationships for some time now.
She’s the BEST Employee I’ve NEVER Met
J.T. O’Donnell is a nationally syndicated career strategist, corporate trainer and founder of Careerealism.com. You can follow her on Twitter
Would you refer a stranger to a job? I guess that all depends on what your definition of ‘stranger’ is these days. Let me explain… Last week, I sent an email to an HR Director introducing a candidate. Seems normal, right? Well, the catch is that I’ve never met the person I referred, or the HR Director - in person, that is. I met them on LinkedIn
The virtual referral
I actually became connected with the candidate a few months ago. Ironically, yet another ‘online colleague’ (a person I’ve become acquainted with online, but have never met), referred her to me. The candidate sent me an e-mail with some questions and we started an interesting conversation, which indirectly led me to learn all about her strengths as an employee.
Eventually, I offered my help introducing her to a writer she admired. She was both grateful and was quite professional throughout the process. Her credibility continued to increase in my mind. So, when she mentioned a company in her area that she was trying to get an interview with, but had had no luck reaching the HR Director, I decided to check my online networking sources and sent an e-mail introduction request on her behalf. I simply explained the reason for my contact, mentioned the candidate’s name and provided a link to her online resume.
Why would I go to such lengths to help a stranger?
Here are a few reasons:
1. In my mind, she’s not a stranger. While it is true that 93% of effective communication between two people is done face-to-face (i.e. voice tone and pace, eye contact, body language, facial expressions, etc.), the reality is that she only got to use 7% of her communication skills (the words and style of her writing) by e-mail to connect with me. I had multiple dialogs with her online – and all of them were consistently professional and enjoyable.
2. Networking online is easy an efficient. These days, it is estimated that over 80% of jobs are gotten by referral. FACT: The ‘Six Degrees of Separation Theory’ truly applies when it comes to job search. Just look at the evidence: it took me all of three minutes to learn that I was only two contacts away from the HR Director she wanted to meet, and just another five minutes of my time to send the e-mail recommending her.
3. Being helpful is good for your business-of-one. Leveraging our contacts online to help someone find a job in this economy is thoughtful and much needed. Not to mention, it boosts your own credibility as a professional. Besides, you just never know when you might need the favor returned. The reality is that anyone you refer still has to get the job, the assignment, or the sale on their own. So, it’s not a big investment on your part. I actually think the returns are greater for the person who does the referring.
The social media advantage
Here’s another example of how social media tools can be used to help people we’ve never metread more | digg story