Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Have a Virtual Coffee

So yesterday I had a great Skype conversation with a new friend and super smart social media girl Keri Jaehnig (follow her on @connectyou or at her website:  It was an amazing opportunity to get to know someone whom I've only come to know online.  So far our chats have been limited to 140 character Tweets back and forth and an occasional drop by on each others' BLOGS.

After two minutes of live conversation I knew that my admiration for this smart woman was well founded. I knew instantly that were destined to be great friends, despite our geographical limitations - she's in Ohio and I'm in Texas.

As we swapped war stories about our various interests and of course explored opportunities to help one another, I sat at my desk, sipped my coffee and continued to remain available to my office staff should anything blow up.  Fortunately nothing did. 

Sure it wasn't exactly the same buzz of excitement and energy that I typically get from spending time with inspiring people like Keri in person, but it was pretty darn close!  In fact, as I hung up with her, I committed to try and do more virtual coffee meetups with people I may never see in person due to schedule or location conflicts. Though Keri has committed to hang out with me live and in person when she comes down to SXSW next year.

The whole experience got me thinking, how many great friendships could I be developing but I am not because of this perceived barrier of location.  I assume because you might be in Alaska we could never develop a close friendship because we'll never meet one another.  I know, I know I should already know this shouldn't stop me as I wrote about my friendship with my dear friend Donna Karlin back in September 2009 (Read about our first meeting here:  But despite my experience with Donna, I still fail to leverage technology like I did yesterday to bring a live voice or video chat into the connecting equation.

After yesterday, I think I'll be sitting at my desk (in my new office by the way) and will putting that excuse of I wish we could meet but I'm here and you're there in the old trash can and start Skyping, Instant Messaging, Google Voicing or Huddling or whatever 'ing I can be doing to expand my engaging and connecting.  Why don't you join me?  All you need is a little gumption, a killer laptop (I recommend an Apple if you want to be cool) and a nice cup of coffee and you can extend your connecting to wherever you and they are!

Ripple On!!!


Yomar said...

Location is definitely not a barrier anymore. The social web has essentially torn down those self-imposed barriers.. Information travels faster than any mode of transportation and it's something we should feel empowered by!

Keri is great and, though I have no plans to make it to professional events this year as I work on my books and such, I feel very much connected to folks like her. With tools like Skype, Twitter, Google+ Hangouts, and so much more, we can get the warmth of "IRL" interaction right from the comfort of our (home) offices.

I think that's a beautiful thing.

What's interesting is that I think we've all stopped at least once in our lives to figure out if we give our online "friends" too much or not enough value. It's taken much personal development to get past the stigma there.. I see no difference. A friend is a friend, no matter where they are.

Ripple On!!!

*drinks some more coffee*

Kip de Moll said...

It's a new world and we're defining it as we go and the technology leads or follows. Thinking on an international scale while relaxed in my little home in Vermont is a challenge, but Skype, Facebook, Twitter, etc is certainly helping to make it all real.

Glad to meet you