Saturday, 31 May 2014

Is the term social a buzzword?

It seems like everything new is social this and social that. Do start ups really want everything to be social or is it just a buzzword? Should every idea have a social component to it? The core concept is that if people talk about your idea/product/app then it will gain more traction and people will enjoy it more.

There are certain products that are social and certain products that are not. Having a cool cafe can be a social business, your Facebook game about zombies is not.

What about education. Everybody likes to make education social. That is people getting together in a place and sharing their marvelous ideas together and they come out of the experience feeling really positive. Being social and collaboration are extremely important but over emphasis won't get you that far. At the same time over emphasis on being social is just as bad and underemphasis.

Think back to your college days. There were people who locked themselves in a room and studied or produced and there were people who played bridge, world of Warcraft or magic cards depending on how old you are.

Who was more successful in the long run? If anything the asocial people sat down and learned some skills while the social socialized. Turning fantasy into reality is difficult to do so talking about it will get you only part of the way. Actually sitting down and following through will be much more beneficial.

Being asocial is just as bad . Often times people do not even go out to meet people. They just sit in their room and create. While this will get you a good product, you do need to meet people run your ideas through filters.

Where do you draw the line? Because I create technical stuff like apps, games, and creative stuff like music and movies. I can say that if you want to be successful sit in your room, turn off the phone, turn off the internet and get stuff done. This will be a huge advantage to you because most people would rather just fantasize about the future in a coffee shop. If you can get something out the door you put yourself in a whole other category than those who do not.

At the same time, you do have to go out and meet people and you do have to go out and get your ideas tested. Working in a bubble is never good and you need to expand your horizons. Be wrong a few times (or many times).

If you want to create things, I would say be at lest 50% asocial and 50% social. Although in my experience people who are at least 70% asocial tend to be more successful. Any combination above 70/30 will be beneficial. Personally I am about 90/10. After seeing how many people flutter away their time socializing I personally tried hard to go the other way.

I love socializing but not all of the time. Personally, I am really at home in my office. It is my favorite place to be. I guess that makes me an introvert. 

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