Zoli posted about the Facebook/LinkedIn debate. His response to the “Facebook is just too resume- and jobsearch-oriented LinkedIn” criticism went like this;

I’m sorry, but since when is this a complaint? Isn’t business all about having an objective and efficiently reaching it with minimum the time and effort? I suspect most of the LinkedIn “deserters” who switched to Facebook are independent types who have the time to hang around in Facebook, and are striving to enhance their personal brand.

Zoli is at least partly correct – an enterprise directed networking offering needs to be objective achievement based. It’s not viable to have a almost completely open offering a la Face book and expect enterprise to find its own relevancy – enterprise time is too critical and enterprises need a better handle in terms of “hard deliverables”.

My take on the Facebook/LinkedIn debate doesn’t come from the point of view that LinkedIn is too objective focused, rather that LinkedIn isn’t sufficiently open to users (enterprise users) creating their own context for objective achievement.

Sure you can find and list jobs and sell your own skills but that’s where it stops. In a social networking situation that’s akin to being able to upload your profile, and see others with similar profiles to you, but not being able to set up a tea-cosy appreciation group, post your tea-cosy pictures or give up to the minute reports of your tea-cosy purchasing trips.

An enterprise directed networking site would/should look very different to how LinkedIn currently does, and I don’t get the feeling that LinkedIn is a progressive and aggressively developing platform, which it needs to be to retain relevance.

How do others think? Is LinkedIn reaching its use-by date? Or is there hope yet? What does the enterprise networking ecosystem look like to you?

Ben Kepes

Ben Kepes is a technology evangelist, an investor, a commentator and a business adviser. Ben covers the convergence of technology, mobile, ubiquity and agility, all enabled by the Cloud. His areas of interest extend to enterprise software, software integration, financial/accounting software, platforms and infrastructure as well as articulating technology simply for everyday users.

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