Every day we use our inbuilt secret weapon called 'Gut Instinct' when meeting new people, approaching new situations and making many decisions.
As our online interactions continue to increase in both our professional and recreational worlds, it is possible to replace Gut Instinct with Mr Overconfident, or Miss Looks-like-a-good -idea.
Taking things back to basics can make all the difference says on line crew recruitment firm findacrew.net.
They give the following advice when meeting new people online.
- Remember that meeting someone online should be no different than meeting in the workplace, in a bar, through a friend - let Gut Instinct work for you.
- Communication is the key. With email, Skype and cheaper international phone calling, there is no excuse not to communicate to a level you are comfortable with before you meet someone in person
- Get references - it is a normal part of job recruitment to ask for or provide references. No different if you are employing or seeking work online.
- When you do meet, make it in a public place - restaurant, airport, shopping centre - somewhere that you not only feel safe, but you can see how the other person deals with other people as well.
- Ask questions! There is no reason to think it is polite not to ask some questions.
It is much better to sort these things out before you commit than to encounter problems along the way which could have been avoided.
Online marine crew and boat network, findacrew.net has seen trends change over the last 7 years.
"When we launched in 2004, many people were still hesitant about meeting people online.
From the beginning, we focussed on providing a safe online environment with many tools to protect your identity and privacy" explains Kylie from their head office in Mooloolaba, Australia.
"While many people didn't really understand the behind the scenes complexity of these features, we find now that it is more of an expectation by the serious job and adventure seekers in our industry. As well as many smaller recreational sailing and motor yachts, we have hundreds of super and mega yachts using our site to find their crew and privacy is extremely important for many of them. The tools we have in place mean they can keep their anonymity, and all boat and crew members are in full control of who sees their details at all times".
This can also be the difference between a paid subscription based and free online network. Always check to see what security and privacy controls are in place before you splash you details all over the internet.