I am unabashedly analog. I try not to lunch alone. I like to meet my clients in person. I use LinkedIn, sure, but I don’t use Facebook or Instagram or Twitter for marketing purposes. Am I a relic of an old boys’ and girls’ club? Maybe – but it works for me.
But what’s an analog networker to do in the age of social distancing – especially when schools, camps, and daycares are closed? Here’s what I’ve been doing:
Reaching out. If your schedule is like mine, your meetings – whether in-person or virtual – are being cancelled and rescheduled. The fluid situation with quarantines and closures has affected everyone’s life and work, and we increase our isolation from each other each day. Even if meetings are cancelled, there’s nothing like reaching out to your contacts and clients simply to check in with them.
You might also try reaching out with some information your clients will find useful. Last Friday, I touched base with some clients, sending them an article about an employer’s potential workers’ compensation risk for COVID-19 exposure. Some of those clients reached out with additional research projects on the effects of the Pennsylvania and Philadelphia directives on temporary social distancing measures.
Reading, writing, and posting. While the toddler naps and the fourth grader does online homework, I write, I read, and I try to post. Keeping up on LinkedIn is important, especially since people are posting more than ever. Liking or commenting keeps your profile active, and keeps your name in others’ feed.
While we all face a work slowdown (and an economic slowdown generally), try maximizing your time in a way that reaches the most people. I’ve been reading up on various issues and drafting articles for publication later. I can then post them over time. Posting on Cyber Job Central, LinkedIn, and my own law firm’s website allows the articles to reach a wide range of readers.
Keeping sane. Not only for my benefit, but for that of my clients. People will need help more immediately than ever before, and will expect work done more quickly since there are fewer distractions. Keeping sharp and active, even in your own home, is key to weathering the COVID-19 storm.