I am manning an exhibit booth at a tax conference in Nashville. One of the interesting things about being behind the exhibit table is people watching. (Before you jump all over me for "watching" instead of "engaging," I do plenty of both. That's just part of the gig.)
The people I am watching are CPAs and/or attorneys. Some come dressed in suits. Some come in wrinkly jeans and ill-fitting polo shirts. And then there is everything in between. Certain people, by their dress and demeanor, draw others to them. Some, again by their dress and demeanor, seem to build a wall around themselves.
Folks, if you are in professional services, dress and act the part. Even if you are with peers, how you present yourself is important. For what it's worth, here is my advice:
Scott Blatchley of the blog, Toothbone, challenged his readers to add to his list of eleven "social media animals." From his blog:
"The idea is to get people using the animal descriptions to reflect
their current moods/purposes or demonstrate their personality – for
example sblatchley(bee). How ubiquitous can we make this if we all use
Here are a few of my favorites from the list:
Owls – good sources for advice and wisdom.
Parrots – only pass on links or repeat what others say.
Meercats – self-appointed police, they report abuse & online dangers.
Puppy Dogs – desperate for any kind of friends or online connections.
Otters – Swims in conversation. Jumps ashore. Observes. Jumps in again for more (the runner-up answer in the competition).
Hummingbirds – known for their quiet energy – natural
pollinators, vibrant and resourceful whilst spending adequate time at
each flower they visit.
Sloths – hangs around, watching and eats leaves. They move slowly.
Fleas – professional networkers looking for business people to bleed.
Kitty cats – social network on their terms, watch
and playfully engage, then go back to sleep again. Occasionally engage
Business valuation professionals can never be mistaken for early social media adopters. While a few have figured out LinkedIn and some are trying to, most are oblivious. I cannot gauge participation on Facebook but I suspect most folks there are there for entirely personal reasons. Other social media platforms fare just as poorly.
I have been interested in the possibilities of Twitter and have wondered if the business valuation community has any presence there at all. From a bit of research, the answer seems to be "no." As an example, as I type this post, the AICPA is having its 2009 annual business valuation conference in San Francisco. Attendance is between 500-600 (not verified). Their meeting planners have done a good job creating a social media platform and one of the things they did was create and communicate a hashtag for the conference (#bval09). It is Monday morning and the conference is in full swing and after search for the hashtag, I see two uses of it by one person (Jan Davis, a friend and smart research professional). Jan is speaking at the conference.
So, Twitter is not on the radar of most business valuation professionals. I am not surprised. Maybe that is an opportunity for us. Hmmm.
I have no idea why one would want to do this, however, it is interesting nonetheless. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you "How to Hollow a Book 80 in Easy Steps" (complete with pictures). This is not for the faint-hearted nor those who consider the defilement of a book sacrilege but, on second thought, might be a nice way to hide valuables around the house in plain sight.