According to Wikipedia, a social network is a structure of online communities of people who share common interests or activities or who are interested in exploring the interests and activities of others. LinkedIn and Facebook are examples very popular social networking sites. Still confused? There’s a well done short video on YouTube by Common Craft that can give you a visual.
I like to think of a social network as a pseudo online club or association. I interact with people who are interesting, engaging and supportive. I mean, isn’t that what we try to do in the face-to-face world?
But one thing I felt was missing, especially in Twitter, was the opportunity for people to just say – this is what I do for a living. Think about it – what’s one of the first things you ask when you meet someone new? What do you do?
So, I want to learn what my followers do for a living. We should all want to know more about those in our community. I’m hoping this will allow us to engage in better conversation. In some instances, I can tell based upon a person’s Tweets, but others…I have no idea. As a result, I created a hashtag called #whatido. Here’s how it works:
- Hashtags are used to identify a topic on Twitter. You add a # to the front of a word to make it a topic. If you’ve spent any time at all on Twitter you’ve probably seen the example: #followfriday
- Use the #whatido hashtag to share with others what you do for a living. For example: #whatido management training, instructional design, professional speaking
- Then your Tweeps can learn more about you…enhancing your network and relationships. You can also search the #whatido Tweets to see if there are others you might want to follow who share your interests.
I hope you’ll join me in trying to establish #whatido every Wednesday. Use it as an opportunity to tell people what you do and learn about others. Encourage your Tweeps to tell everyone what they do. And re-tweet (repeat) the cool stuff people do in the Twitter community.
Just like that famous line from Jerry Maguire, “Help me help you“. This is one of the reasons that social networking exists. Let’s help each other be successful!
P.S. Speaking of what people do, be sure to check out “The Completely Random Carnival of HR” over at Recruitment 2.0. Susanna has put together a great collection of reading that highlights the talent in our profession. Thanks for including the Bartender on the list!