Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Link in without being a lurker

Do you still read the morning paper every day? Me too. Guess what? I rarely find 1st section news that is still news to me. I have become so connected that I already know most of the big stories before I read them. My daily ritual includes silence, coffee and the paper, so I don't expect this to change anytime soon. My newer rituals include checking the news feed before bed. I know what people tell you about getting on the computer before bed, but this helps me sleep better.
I have also done a pretty good job of being early in the curve for information within my industry. In fact, I really read every link on the right, and will always read every link on the right. This will always be the site I will use rather than an RSS feeder (which is still incredibly useful). Not once, but twice in the last 2 weeks, I have unearthed business opportunities on that feed on the right. I read email constantly. I have a blackberry. I don't spend ridiculous hours in front of the computer, but I definitely make good use of my time staying on top of what is going on. I don't understand professionals that don't reply to within 24 hours 90%+ of the time. This is a huge pet peeve. This is also a new acceptable form of unprofessional ism. This is wrong. The only thing worse is when people don't return phone calls promptly.
So here's my story from today. As I was reading my blogs and news of the day, I came across a piece about a winery that I covet and am trying to add to my portfolio. I read it, and forwarded the link of to the person that I've been going back and forth with. As it turns out, I was the first person to tell him about it. I was lucky, but I made my own luck, I wasn't online when it was posted, I was out selling wine. Instead, during my routine, I caught this items, more than 2 hours after it posted. Now here comes the what if. What if this is the "make or break" moment? In my eyes, this is such an important and coveted piece of my puzzle, that if I were to somehow put this together, years from now, this could be one of those moments. There was no way for me to know this was going to happen. It may never lead to anything. That said, it's worth recognizing that I put myself in this position. Staying in touch is crucial. Making technology and your time work together is crucial today. Everyone will experience a certain amount of failure in life, but you can't hit 500 home runs if you don't get the at bats. Today, I gave myself 1 more at-bat.

1 comment:

  1. The tech industry has worked like this for years- I expect replies from vendors on emails within an hour at the most, and if they're not easily reachable primarily via email they get dropped in favor of a company that can do business more quickly. I use my office phone ONLY when I need to make calls at the office - I almost always let everything go to voicemail unless I'm expecting the call.

    It always amazes me that, given the amount of information available at all times at the speed it's thrown at us, people still don't bother. I pay attention to my RSS feeds more than any other news source - I still check news aggregators like Huffpo, drudge, and others - but I find that even they are usually behind the times.

    I find it interesting that the tools I rely on so heavily aren't more widespread in your industry - and that definitely gives you an advantage!