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Unexpected Advantages of Regular Ryze UseViews: 630
Jul 26, 2008 11:57 pmUnexpected Advantages of Regular Ryze Use#

John Stephen Veitch
Hello everyone.

Most of what I write below, was originally written in answer to a question on LinkedIn. The question regarded a suitable topic for social media research and PhD level.

I wrote:

"I've been involved in the Internet very strongly for 15 years, and I've seen the pattern repeated again and again. The Internet is always headed in some direction nobody was planning and where-ever that is, it's not part of today's discussion. While we all have our own ideas about the future possibilities, those ideas are inevitably overtaken by forces larger than any of us. We cannot imagine what the Internet is like, let alone predict it's future.

On the other hand there is a great deal of useful work to do in social networks exploring the results of the last five years. I believe the best place to do that is inside Ryze.

Ryze was one of the earliest business networks. That distinction is important. In fact the "networks" (groups, discussion boards) inside Ryze with a business focus were the most difficult to run successfully. Networks with a social and political focus were on the face of it much more successful. Sadly, from my point of view, so were networks focused on quick easy ways to become a "millionaire" , and MLM networks. There is a rich field to explore there about who the members are, and what they believe. (particularly what they believe about themselves and what they imagine they need to do to succeed.)

On Ryze it's possible to choose at random individuals and to trace their history. Sadly, as in EVERY social network the failure rate is massively high. People join, and effectively do nothing much after that, particularly they don't join networks and they don't get to know who the other members are. They don't engage. They don't participate.

On the other hand there are some stories of business success. People met on Ryze and were later on able to negotiate significant business proposals. Given this was a key objective of Ryze, this hasn't been the key benefit.

BUT, the story that's very significant and is not being told, is the way the lives of people who have remained active for 3-4 years has changed. Most of these people arrived on Ryze with very ordinary expectations. They didn't see themselves as leaders, they came to learn. But over time they gained confidence, they identified who they were and where their special skills lay, and most of them have stepped up to become Network Leaders on Ryze. None of them talk about this process, but if you trace the posts of individuals over time (and that history is available) you'll see a remarkable change in those individuals.

Once again this proves what I said in the first paragraph. We set out to do something on the Internet. We proceed with the best possible will and as we do so, a little of what we intended happens, but something else, quite amazing and unexpected happens. We don't even recognize it, because it's not what we were looking for. Personal growth was not and is not the intention of Ryze. We all like to imagine that we are already "personally grown" and that what we need is "business sales" or business development."

So in terms of developing an Open Future for yourself, participation on Ryze has great value. But I caution you on being too focused on "goals" or "business objectives". That focus taken to extreme will make it impossible for the sort of unexpected influences I've been talking about to happen. To have an Open Future, you first of all need to be "OPEN' to new ideas, to new people and to engaging in some new activities.

John Stephen Veitch
Open Future Limited - http://www.openfuture.biz/
Innovation Network - http://veech-network.ryze.com/
Building an Open Future - http://openfuture-network.ryze.com/

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