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    16 Replies Latest reply on Jan 31, 2008 9:59 AM by Iwrite

    Why do you not put info into "About your Business"?

    puzzleman Tracker

      In these forums, some people talk about things that it seems they have knowledge of. But like with every situation, I want to see if they really know what they are talking about, so I look to their profile online. It is very fustrating to look their and not see a thing under the description of who they are and what they do. I don't want a sales pitch but at least a few sentences about you so I can know a little more about you.

      Bottom line question: Why do you not put your info on the about page?
        • Re: Why do you not put info into "About your Business"?
          Iwrite Pioneer
          Excellent question.

          I have information there but I struggled with the decision because I am in a transitional state. I worried about later causing some confusion when I finished this transition, but decided it was worth the risk. I also didn't want it to look like I was trying to sell something, I came here for help and insight.

          I think some people have trouble talking about themselves. Look at how hard it is to write a resume for some people or a self promotional piece for them or a business. Trying to figure out what to say without coming across wrong requires a delicate balance.

          That is just me. I updated my information a week after joining. At first, I was so interested in exploring the forum that I didn't want to "waste the time." Hey, I always used to go for the toy in the cereal book first!
            • Re: Why do you not put info into "About your Business"?
              mpoweringu Wayfarer
              I actually have to agree with you puzzleman! I love helping other small business owners reach success. It's why I do what I do! I just love business in general and being able to create something from nothing that makes the lives of others better. So when I want to get involved in opportunities that connect me with similar individuals (i.e. business networks and online communities such as this,) I want to be able to find out more about them as well as them being able to learn something about me!

              Now I completely understand Iwrite's point about not everyone having the ability to write what they feel is a good description, but do they have a website? Do they have a telephone number? These are still simple things that can be posted here to give people opportunity to learn about who you are!

              I can also understand if someone doesn't want to share their information because they are only seeking information and guidance, but are not wanting to connect with anyone and do not want those here who wish to "sell/advertise" only their business calling or emailing them. Unfortunately, there is no escape from that even if you do not put your information here! I get at least 3 calls a day from companies wanting to "sell" me something that got my information from public database of registered businesses!

              If you are here because you see the value in connecting with other individuals and small business owners and even feel that you/they may benefit from this connection, then you should share your information so that others may learn about you and contact you to possibly express interests in a strategic partnership! I love partnerships! I love relationships! I like talking with people and helping them or forging a business relationship where we can help each others business's grow! If I can't learn anything about you... I'll never know if your company can help me secure that next big contract, which means a big contract for you as well!

              Also... I hate that people are stuck in the thought of "web anonymity" (meaning hiding who you are.) To me, this is a social business network like if I went to a local chamber's business after hours, only online. However, I can't even learn your name until I visit your profile (and only if you posted your name) and I can't introduce myself until you visit my profile! Maybe I should change my username to my actual name!

              "Hi Iwrite... nice to meet you!" "Hi puzzleman... what do you do?" Just sounds silly to me! If there are a ton of authors, journalists, bloggers, and others who will share their actual name so you can feel that you are really connecting to them (instead of a digital representation of them... well, hopefully them) then why would we not want to do the same?!

              P.S. - I've worked 5+ years in the internet security industry... so trust me... I know about the fears of identity theft by posting information on the web, but I tell you what, you try and get Kevin P. Coyne's identity from his actual name being linked to his column at and I will be impressed!

              Sorry to post so much, but obviously this is a big pet-peeve of mine!

                • Re: Why do you not put info into "About your Business"?
                  LUCKIEST Guide
                  Great answer. I am a SCORE Counselor and like you love helping other small business owners reach success.
                  We do it at SCORE. As you Know SCORE is FREE and a partner to Bank of America.
                  • Re: Why do you not put info into "About your Business"?
                    Iwrite Pioneer
                    Since I have my information on my profile I don't know why I am responding. Except to say that, it is a personal choice. I respect both points of view.

                    Why don't we use our real names? Don't know. I didn't because no one else seemed to be doing that here. I'm such a follower! I need to think about this. I am under no illusion that I am protecting my identity. I don't want the sales calls or emails. I'm not set up for them yet.

                    As for helping small businesses, without giving my name or my contact information I have given away ideas on this forum that I charge clients for. I and others have answered questions about various topics that small businesses that we would charge good money to get answers off line. I am not wealthy, I could really use the money but I see folks who can't afford my rates that really need help. So, I help. Does having my name, phone number, and email address make my help any better? Nope. I help without expecting or wanting anything in return as many others on this forum also do.

                    But if having my information makes a difference - ask me and I will provide it. There is more than one solution to this situation. If you want to know, ask. I love partnerships also, but I am not set up for a high volume of calls and emails, not yet.

                      • Re: Why do you not put info into "About your Business"?
                        mpoweringu Wayfarer
                        Great points Iwrite and I completely agree with those who are here to help and for help only. Let me clarify, my angst is for those that come on sites such as this to seriously find and connect with other business owners, but do not share any of their own information. For me, sometimes it's fine just knowing your actual name (hoping you actually put your real name and not one that is false!) It just sort of helps me feel like we're building a professional relationship. Some of you live and work where I do in Charlotte, NC. It would be nice to know your name so that if I were at a business event or social afterhours, I would know it was you when I met you. Not many of us introduce ourselves in the real world like: "Hi, my name is mpoweringu. How are you?"

                        If I said, "Hi my name is Brian Hamlett with mPower Consulting," and you said, "Hi I'm Derek, a freelance copywriter." I would ask, "Are you the same Derek I talk to on the Bank of America Small Business Community Website?" "Yep!"

                        Now we automatically have common ground and a strengthened relationship that could grow into a prosperous partnership for both of us! But again, I only recommend this if you are here to make such connections!

                        Brian Hamlett (I'm going to try and start signing my contributions with my name! Practice what you preach!)
                  • Re: Why do you not put info into "About your Business"?
                    Lighthouse24 Ranger

                    I think there are several reasons why members don't include profile information:
                    1. People have a legitimate fear of sharing personal details in a public forum.
                    2. Many people are here seeking help -- usually because they've already made one or more serious mistakes -- and it is easier to admit that and ask for help if you can remain anonymous.
                    3. A few people are "snipers" who just want to argue or take cheap shots at others -- they don't have the guts to stand behind what they write.
                    4. A few people regularly and knowingly provide false, deceptive, and inaccurate information in their posts to take advantage of other members (of course, many of these same people provide false, deceptive, and inaccurate information in their profiles, too!)

                    I agree that if you are seeking answers, it's helpful to be able to read more about the people who provided the answers in order to assess value. It's also important to provide information about yourself if you're the one asking the questions, so people can offer more specific and useful responses (that's one of the points I was trying to make in "They Stole My Idea!" posted in the Stories section last week).

                    You build a better and stronger community when you get to know your neighbors. Hopefully (like all of us who have responded in this thread so far), members who are here to stay and contribute will eventually fill in their profiles.
                    • Re: Why do you not put info into "About your Business"?
                      Ed O'Gee Adventurer
                      I agree, I don't care if folks post a Yahoo email address instead of their business address, as that is what I do so that all of your responses don't clog my business email box. But I think even if you haven't yet opened your business and are getting advice or to puzzleman's point giving advice it would be great to know a little something about you, your current business, or the business you hope to open one day.