Career Management – What Your Career Needs is FOCUS
options for professionalsdeveloping their personal brands online. While LinkedIn has clearly emerged as a recruiting social powerhouse by the sheer force of numbers, there is a definite opportunity, a la TED, for open conversation and the exchange of ideas among industry experts, thought leaders, and information seekers. Enter Focus.
Focus is an online community that helps professionals make better decisions by making the world’s business and technology expertise available to everyone. At the heart of this community are 5,000 leading business and technology experts in hundreds of different areas including business management, marketing, sales, recruitment, talent management, technology, social networking and many more. Focus currently has more than 1 million members and growing.
Already on information overload? As a Member you can personalize the information you receive by only following the specific topics, questions and experts you’re interested in.
Best of all, this tool is free and very easy to use and is compatible with your mobile device for keeping up with your network when away from the office.
Focus Experts answer questions, publish research, and speak at events in a variety of different markets and a wide range of topics. Many Focus Experts are top “C” level executives across a variety of industries.
You can connect with the Experts in three primary ways:
- Q&A – Focus Q&A provides business and technology professionals with an opportunity to ask questions of and receive multiple answers from Focus Experts. It’s a great way to get near-instant answers to specific business questions.
- Research – Produced by leading Experts, Focus Research is designed to provide you with the knowledge and insight you need to make seminal decisions. Research offerings are often based on data collected from Members and range from topically oriented Research Briefs to authoritative Research Guides that provide in-depth, authoritative analysis of trends and events.
- Events – Experts also participate in a variety of events, including Roundtables, Webcasts and Summits. Focus Events are built around Expert speakers and provide attendees with an opportunity to personally interact with Experts.
After signing up and engaging with Members for a week or so, I can see that the network is aptly named. It is very easy to connect with other members who are specifically involved in your areas of interest and engagement is rapid (no waiting for inMail responses or personal introductions that never come).
From a professional’s point of view, membership in Focus is an incredible opportunity to directly engage with thought leaders and get answers to very specific questions – its like having a team of consultants in your back pocket – free of charge.
This community also provides an exceptional vehicle for demonstrating your own expertise to an elevated audience by asking questions, providing direct answers to other members, and responding to follow-up questions.
Ready to reach higher? Consider applying for Focus Expert status. Experts come from different backgrounds, ranging from day-to-day practitioners to recognized industry leaders who answer questions, publish research, and speak at events.
As an Expert you:
- Need deep subject matter expertise in a specific topic or market. You must be able to provide meaningful insights into specific issues and decisions that members of the Focus community need help with.
- You must display a willingness to help other professionals by sharing your knowledge and insights. This sharing occurs primarily online, but can also take place in offline formats.
- You must be able to communicate with other members of the community in a professional manner. This includes written, verbal, and visual forms of communication.
- You need strong social networks in the relevant topic or market.
If you’re looking to take your personal online brand to the next level and gain greater access to top-level industry expertise, I invite you to check out Focus. I think you’ll find the direct engagement and immediacy of exchange in this community to be a refreshing change.
Follow Focus on Twitter: @Focus
Focus on Facebook: Focus
I’d be very interested in hearing from you if you decide to join Focus and let me know what you think. Will you find this a helpful tool in making decisions and/or showcasing your professional knowledge?