handshakes.work

Make new powerful connections every month

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Hello hunters! I coded handshakes.work over the Christmas holidays with the goal to build a uber-simple platform to connect business individuals locally over a coffee. There are quite a few solutions around, but most of them are based on a Tinder-like approach that doesn't help people get out of their networking biases & bubbles. I have been inspired by Serendipity by @manasvinik and by weave.in by @zealoustiger. The goal is not just to connect individuals with random people, but also to focus on a more local approach, help them schedule their first coffee / lunch / beer and make it as easy as possible for the actual real meeting to happen! At the start, there will be quite a mix of automation and "human intelligence" (a fancy way to say "lots of manual work"). I plan to leverage on our learnings, successes & failures to then make a lot of things happen!
@enricofoschi The idea is very nice but...well you need to have lots of users so you could make this happen. I'm in let's say a country where you can't find many peoples wanting to try those kind of things (except me πŸ˜‡). Would love to see creating a the possibility of let's say a Skype beer meeting 😍
@silviust7 @enricofoschi that's an amazing idea. I wouldn't want to do what other online services do already very well, but I do believe in the power of users' choice. I'm off to watch Star Wars now, I will add the option as soon as I get back.
@enricofoschi I'm glad to see you're opened to suggestions πŸ˜€. (May the force be with you πŸ”¦ )
@silviust7 @enricofoschi happy users is the best rocket fuel a maker could get :). Thanks to @rrhoover and the @producthunt team, this kind of collaboration is now easier than ever ^^
@silviust7 @enricofoschi I second that one. If it is over 4 blocks from my office I would rather do a skype first meeting. The great part of this would be to do it every two weeks for a year. If that is the case then having it close is super important.
Just signed up. Thanks, @enricofoschi
Conceptually, I love this. What will be your method of quality control? It would be great to build in a ratings feature to validate if the meeting was truly worth the time. Consider this like a private social endorsement. This both teaches your software and validates that someone is as qualified as their LinkedIn indicates. Quick suggestion re: the onboarding process. Once I submitted my LinkedIn, I was unable to get back to the home page should I have wanted to continue reading about the product. The link on your logo directs to https://handshakes.work/done. I also found it frustrating that manually entering the URL resulted in the same thing. I had to open it in an incognito window. I presume this is a quick fix :) Future integrations with services like branded.me would be neat as well. Good luck @enricofoschi!
@anderfrischer thanks Ander - great feedback. Quality control is indeed the big deal and I see it as the "make it or break it" factor in this. I plan to do a lot of manual work and, initially, to get a lot of feedback, then trying to identify patterns and fine tune them to the point where they just work. Too optimistic? Maybe. I may look back at this comment and realize how stupid I’ve been, but I guess this is going to be a learning as well :) Regarding the automatic redirect, I understand exactly what you are saying. I was trying to be smart by redirecting users to the right step, ending up only to block them to a unescapable UX jail. Lesson learnt. I fixed it and now you can browse back and forward as you wish :) Thanks again for the feedback and hoping to connect you with some awesome people out there.
Awesome idea, keep it up!
This reminds me of the early @treatings: https://www.treatings.co/ See this for more context: http://smallbiztrends.com/2015/0... It's worth noting they've pivoted away from coffee meetings.
@drewmeyers Treatings presents itself in some ways as a per-project-basis connection or meeting. I feel like Handshakes.work is more of an introduction for like-minded potential business relationships without expectations for immediate ROI. It's intended for a longer-tailed networking strategy. Thoughts @enrichofoshi?
@anderfrischer @drewmeyers spot on with the purpose and good question. I think there are great tools out there to stay connected and everybody has their own network of preference. I am looking at this just as an initial introduction, something to help people connect with others that wouldn't otherwise have connected with, and possibly to open more doors to new opportunities.
@anderfrischer You should read up on the early iterations of Treatings, they were written about a lot (they penned a regular guest post on Pando, which is how I originally found them).... it was facilitating coffee meetings.
@enricofoschi "help people connect with others that wouldn't otherwise have connected with, and possibly to open more doors to new opportunities." There is absolutely a crowd of people interested in that. Startup entrepreneurs, and those in biz dev/sales roles, who essentially make their money by networking. But, most people in the world need a very specific reason to go out of their way to meet someone in the real world. "Connecting" is not a value prop the average person cares about. We learned that the hard way, and spent a lot of my own personal money. Figure out the "why", then solve that with an amazing product specific to that use case.
@drewmeyers this is quite an inspiring point Drew and I do quite agree. The connection driver (aka motivation / why / ...) is the key here. It's too much of a guessing game for me at the moment, and by closely looking at what happens on the platform, I hope to steer the development in the direction that better serves a purpose and climbs down from a high-level "networking" platform to a more personalized experience aimed to network with a goal. Thanks for the feedback