Discover more from Christin’s Newsletter
The magical ingredients for online friendships 🪄
My past as a professional friendship experience designer in the biotech industry
How to make friends online
I spent last week on a writing retreat in Tumalo Lake Lodge with dear friends met through Write of Passage. We have met consistently every Sunday morning for the past year and a half. In each meeting, which can easily be 1.5-2 hours, we discussed our writer’s journeys, provided essay feedback, and shared heartfelt advice for both life and work.
So when we spent time together in-person amongst the snowy pines, I felt it was easy and natural. We had light agendas in mind, yet managed to write and solve each other’s problems, while making bone broths and hearty salads.
I couldn’t help but think—how can I help others find their group of trusted friends who can provide such warmth and practical assistance with their calling? What were the magical ingredients that made it happen?
Here’s a quick video with some practical tips:
(I’ve given up on choosing a less goofy face for YouTube thumbnails)
A Chat GPT summary of my video as a TLDW:
I discussed the importance of having friends who understand and support me, reflecting on my own experiences and sharing my personal strategies for making friends. I emphasized the need for being proactive in initiating friendships and the role of online communities in facilitating this process.
5 points I made:
Importance of body language: I believe understanding social cues and non-verbal communication can help in initiating and maintaining friendships.
Initiating one-on-one meetings: I have found that being proactive and willing to make the first move in friendships, especially in online communities, can be a key to forming connections.
Researching potential friends: I often spend time looking through a person's online content and understanding their thought process, which helps me establish a connection more easily.
Introducing friends to each other: I actively connect friends with similar interests to help grow my network of friends and improve overall happiness.
Recharging and self-care: I take time for personal reflection and recharging, as it is important for me to be a good friend to others and maintain a healthy balance.
Friendships in business contexts
When I was working in the biotech industry, I ran advisory boards that consisted of influential and knowledgeable doctors. Biotech companies need advisory boards to make sure the drug is going to serve as many appropriate patients as possible. This includes the beginning stages of research and development, all the way to understanding how to market the drug.
One of the most important insights when running for advisory boards is to make sure that the doctors are able to be friendly.
Before the pandemic, we flew doctors out from around the country so they can meet in person and read each other’s body language. (It often ends up being in Dallas-Forth Worth because it’s the most central airport…)
We give them each other’s bios so they feel prepared, and answer any questions they have about attendees ahead of time.
We design reflective questions for them to understand each other’s perspectives.
We allocate plenty of breakouts and 1:1s so fruitful conversations can arise.
Therefore, I believe fostering friendships is the foundation of successful business outcomes, from big-corporate to solo creator journeys. So no matter your vocation, it is important to reflect on friendships and how they impact your life.
What are your tips, advice, or challenges in making friends to help you succeed?
If you like the vibe of my newsletter, I’m confident you’ll enjoy the writings of the Sunday Crew:by by by by