An Indian guy from Chennai flying 7700 kms to meet someone in Enschede, Netherlands – who he has never met before and who only know each other because of social media – wow, the world has come a long way. Yes, I met Christian Fictoor via Twitter about 10 months ago.
When I tell people that I went to Europe to collaborate with someone in Netherlands on my book “Is your marketing in sync or sinking?” and also deliver some keynotes, they usually picture tons of round-table discussions, toiling away hours in front of a white board and vociferous typing on the laptop.
In reality, it was walks around some spectacular places, meeting people at restaurants, having lot of fun and pulling each other’s leg – yet getting lot of work done effortlessly. This is exactly how, the 10 days of in-person collaboration with Christian Fictoor was.
Collaboration knows no boundaries nor cultures
When I first landed at the Amsterdam Airport, Chris thought it could be a little weird for us to finally meet – as we have been conversing and working together on the marketingsync concept for almost a year and most of our collaborations had happened via social media. Imagine this, we met via twitter, had face to face conversations via Google Hangout and made mutual friends on Facebook.
But the moment, we met in person, we felt that we knew each other for long and he actually hosted me at his home for 10 days. Wow – it cannot get any better. To top it all, his friends became my friends and mine became his and the circle of close friends just expanded itself gracefully.
Fun with Keynote Talks
We did 3 keynote talks at MKB Twente, Amsterdam and Enschede respectively and all it took for us to prepare the presentation was two focused hours that too to get our story on a PowerPoint.
That made us realize something remarkable.
“Stories are not built, they are just told as they happen. When you tell real stories, it shows. “
It actually showed up on stage that I was not an Indian anymore, he wasn’t Dutch anymore, we were just two friends that had fun doing things and were sharing an idea – which actually inspired a few people.
Chris also got me connected to the other members (Andras and Jordy) of the management team at L’Amp – the social media amplification company where he works as a Chief Innovation Officer and … Bam – we brainstormed continuously for 7 hours leading to clear ideas as to what marketingsync as a brand would do. Time just flew by, but as it did, we were able to crystalize things.
Jordy told us something interesting, I would remember his quote forever
“If you know you know you know, you know you know” – so profound and yet so actionable.
Lot’s to come your way, we have started and actually taken off.