Two important news items relating to online networking were announced this past week - the first is that Google now allows you search for degrees of separation between any actor and Kevin Bacon. (For the record, my Bacon number is 2 - I was an extra in Midnight Run with Robert DeNiro, who starred in Sleepers with Bacon).
But more importantly, Linked In announced a new service that would allow non-profits to locate potential board members. Now to you, it might sound a little off-the-beaten-track for this blog - at the very least, that I mistakenly posted my entry for this week's Job Stalker in the wrong place. However, this is a great opportunity for many non-profits (and community groups) to locate potential advocates and volunteers.
One of the many things I enjoy about Linked In is that it empowers me to research current thinkers and potential colleagues on a purely professional level. For job seekers, it can mean research into potential employers, informational interviews about a given field...but for non-profits and community groups, the need is often more critical. Linked In, as a popular web-based tool for professional networking online, has taken a lead role in meeting those needs.
In an environment where sometimes "who you know" can often lead to blind trails, having a pool of talent to pull from can mean the difference between a sustainable non-profit....or one that struggles. Community groups can also locate volunteers with specific professional skills. In short, this can help non-profits and other Chicago-based community groups locate key board members (to govern their activities), experts, and other needed resources.
In a city like Chicago, major movers and shakers are often quite visible...but the behind-the-scenes people less so. This is a really cool way to get access to both.
It might even improve your own Bacon number.
Questions? Thoughts? Leave them in the comments below, or drop me a line via e-mail.