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Learning to talk

Online Business is all about networking we are told. Communication, providing information, offering content, engagement, telling the story, getting the message right, social media…

I remember when I was 5 I heard this strange frightening noise. Running to my mother she reassured me saying “It’s just the telephone dear.”

I know this ain’t news, but they’ve moved the goal posts.

Walking into a fog

Immersing yourself into the world of online business is like walking into a fog. You are drip fed snippets of instruction in the form of opinion, some good, some bad. Some good when it was written, but that was last month! Experts offering free advice (because that’s what they do) and even they don’t really seem too sure.

You are getting over a thousand tweets a day, you are a member of 10 forums, 20 groups on LinkedIn. You are subscribed to 35 newsletters and you’ve lost count of the blogs, feeds and Youtube Channels. What do you delete, what do you like, what do you share, what do you bookmark, what do you comment on? That’s before attempting to decide what to try to use or even remember.

You cobble together your online strategy based on the do’s and don’ts (some actions seem to be on both lists). You implement. You test and measure. You tweak and try to make sense of the results.

As you walk through the fog, at some point you might even get some actual work done.

Part of life

My 5 yr old could type before he could talk. He uses Youtube to check out new product reviews for games and toys. He is a member of an online forum for kids. He has a bookmarks folder that makes mine look weak. I was having trouble finding a film clip recently and he told me to “narrow the search a little”.

He didn’t learn this stuff. He just knows it, in the same way you and I ‘know’ how to talk. It seems natural, automatic. It’s part of his language and well… just part of life, part of the world around him.

‘Learning’ online business is hard when you think of it as a technology, a course here, as a list of bulleted titbits of vital information to be bookmarked there. Trying to view it through the eyes of a child isn’t easy either. But sometimes it really helps.

By the way, ‘Goal Posts’ is the name of a football blog.

Robin Chedgey is owner of – Ireland’s first and only complete scanning service for people with pre-digital printed photos.