How REAL Businesspeople Get it Done

This post is a bit of tongue-in-cheek, inspired by Ten Reasons why I won’t Use Social Media Sites, authored by John Mariotti. In it, John takes the position that “Real business people realize that this social networking trend is superficial,” and “All of us are drowning in a tidal wave of complexity already, and these social networking sites make this complexity worse by an order of magnitude.”

RBs (Real Businesspeople) sometimes see little value in things that are in early-stage evolution. Like, say, FAX machines and e-mail once were. NARBs (Not a Real Businessperson), on the other hand, sometimes see the inevitable trends of the future and jump right in, unafraid of the messiness, and ready to shape it.

Use of social media tools is a central part of my business, and a critical part of my future business plan. However, since I am now officially NARB, I must decline to join the illustrious ranks of many RBs who have gone before me:

    1. The many RBs who believed that computers would never make it into the home.
    2. The many who figured that e-commerce or digital music were a flash in the pan.
    3. Those who saw no future in the automobile. Only a NARB would trade in his horse.
    4. Those who belittled silly early adopters who chose papyrus over stone. NARBanderthals!

Social media is in its early stages, and the platforms are imperfect. It takes some patience to sift through the chaff and find the wheat. But disintermediation is a tidal wave that won’t be stopped. Immediate, global connectivity (often leading to face-to-face meeting) is a train that has left the station. The microphone is now in the hands of the people, and we can publish, connect, meet, work, seek, find, and share.

Sure, some of the social media applications are geared toward kid stuff, but for some of us early-adopting NARBs, we’re doing real business (wait, that would make us RBs). We’re getting to know real people, with borders dissolving (wait, that might open up future opportunities and collaborations). We’re looking beyond immediate ROI into a rich future of a networked economy, where individuals can carve their own path and do business at many levels with a variety of people of our own choosing.

How NARBulous. I think I’ll Twitter this. But if you want, I’ll send you a memo…!

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About Steve Woodruff
Steve Woodruff is a blogger, a Connection Agent, and a consultant in the pharma/healthcare industry. He specializes in helping people and companies make mutually beneficial connections.

4 Responses to How REAL Businesspeople Get it Done

  1. Connie Reece says:

    Hmmm. I’m managing to get all my bills paid, even though, like you, I am a NARB. In fact, if we get any more not-real-business, we’ll have to bring on an associate. I think it’s NARBulous being an early adopter … John Mariotti can remain an antediluvian adopter if he wants to. I’ll hold on to my few remaining postage stamps in case I ever need to contact him.

  2. Gavin Heaton says:

    I am a NARB and proud of it. In fact, if I was an RB then I would not actually be able to do my RB work. Does that make the the anti-NARB?

  3. Lori Magno says:

    Steve, if you could carbon copy my direct supervisor on the NARB memo that would be great.

  4. Technologies advance, more people connecting, greater disintermediation…awesome.

    But the core essence of real business people lies achieving goals while being productive. While sharing & connecting in new ways is great, I think there’s going to be an increased importance of time-effectiveness of interpersonal communication. This is a human behavioral process unrelated to technology itself. My basic points for are:

    – Great email communication encourages conciseness, direction, acknowledgment of other’s views, conditional questions & instructions to reduce chain mail length, limited opining, appropriate audience selection (TO, CC, BCC), and a respect for other people’s computing/interaction time in terms of relevancy & importance.

    – Recognize the communicative power of the telephone in transmission/reception/response speed; the awesome multi-dimensional communication elements that are missing in online communication: pace, volume, tone, pitch, pausing, and accentuation; the ability for certain messages (like praise, empathy, thanks, congratulations) to have greater impact.

    I could go on…but it’d be best if we had a conference call with Valeria ;)

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