The internet is awesome. I use it every single day. I can spend hours losing myself in fascinating blog posts, hilarious tweets, and reams of information on anything that happens to pop into my head.
That, however, is completely meaningless. The content I while so many hours away consuming nothing without the people behind it.
Charlie Southwell from Screendrip recently taught me this. We developed a fun and interesting Twitter acquaintance. We chatted about Google+, social media trends and other such chat. We managed to arrange a quick coffee in that scary place – the real world. Over a latte, he pointed out that we probably learned more about each other in the 10 min walk from the tube to the coffee shop than we might have in many months conversing online.
This is the power of events like NFP Tweetup. The presentations are fascinating, the discussions stimulating, yet it’s the chats in the pub are where inspiration happens. Interesting though the hashtag may be for those following at home, ideas brew so much faster verbally, in the unique chemistry of face-to-face discussions where new ways of working seem to be appear from thin air, faster than we can keep up with.
It’s also those real world relationships that have started online, and been brought into reality through such events, that have been the most educational, challenging and downright fun for me.
So if you want maximum inspiration and to be genuinely connected to those who can inspire you the most, take it offline. Take that someone who you only know as an avatar, and just go for a quick coffee and a chat. You will learn more in 10 minutes than you will in a thousand tweets.