Networking can, at the best of times, be a tiresome experience. The whole format of networking as we know it is a system designed to give us grief. From firstly having to trawl the internet for people in a related field, or using your current contacts to put you into contact with new contacts, then onto slow back-and-forth emails, before finally trying to get your schedules to line up so that you can either set up some sort of meeting. It’s something I try and do as little as possible, simply for the fact it can be so time-consuming and you’re not guaranteed to see any worthwhile results.
Not too long ago, however, a friend of mine let me know about a new app that has been designed to break down the challenges that stand before us when it comes to networking. That app is Shapr.
Imagine for a moment that Tinder and LinkedIn came together and had a child. That, essentially, is what Shapr is. A service aimed at making networking hassle free. All it requires is a basic profile, including a bio, your interests, field of work, businesses or organisations, and how you prefer to meet. If you’re on the app as someone looking for investment in your clothing business, then you can tailor your profile to show what your business is about, who it is your looking to network with, and what it is you require/can offer.
After you fill all of the information in to the app, you’re ready to go, and this is where the app draws similarities with the Tinder service. The home screen will present you with a select amount of ‘suggestions’ each day. These are other people’s profiles which might be of interest to you. You can browse to see their bio, business and networking interests, and if they suit you, you swipe right, if not, swipe left. If you are both of interest to each other, and have both swiped right, only then do you get the opportunity to message each other.
Not only is this a great way of saving time, it’s also a great way of narrowing down your search. It’s a format that is so perfect for networking. You can discover people that previously you may never have been aware of, let alone had the potential to connect with them. Having a system in place that only connects you if you are both of interest to each other completely removes the awkward element of having to request contact. Everyone is on a level playing field.
With almost 500,000 users worldwide, this French-based app is very quickly becoming a well known name on the social-media/networking scene. You can become a user yourself by downloading the app from the App Store here, or the Play Store here.