Friday, July 10, 2009

The killer app in business networking

In ‘Trust is the Killer App’ Leon Benjamin quotes William Davies at the Institute for Public Policy Research who recently published a ground breaking paper that examines the role of the government in the increasingly decentralised social and political activities taking place online. He states there are three sources of trust: State, Community & Online Community. Notice the absence of corporations. He goes on to say that “out of nowhere trust has become the most talked about abstractions of our times

In the NRG research into business networking trust was identified as a central factor due to the complex nature of the relationships that develop and the possible impacts both positive and negative that may result:

"Transactions that occur within a network are not always backed with a monetary transaction. There are many levels of granularity, and this presents an opportunity to develop trust with acceptable risk.

Therefore forming a network should be based on developing trust, and trust can be defined as 'Firm reliance on the integrity, ability, or character of a person'

So Trust is the killer application in business networking and that means you need to take a long term view. To quote the research again,

"Many businesses who network are in the establishment phase of their business. They may stay there for some considerable time. They would like to grow their sales and value. The short term pressures of getting sales and cash flows may not sit easily with developing trust, which is a long term strategy, rather than a short term tactic.

The paradox in the establishment phase is that a trusted network could offer resources, credibility, a cost saving and a time saving. Businesses who develop a strategic network have developed their businesses and their relationships. They are able to reap the benefits of trust

Good Networking!
Dave Clarke
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