Adam Kleinbaum is an expert in social network structures at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth University in New Hampshire. He says research shows that people with diverse and far-reaching networks get promoted faster and evaluated more favourably.
“In some industries, they even get bigger bonuses,” says the associate professor of business administration. But it’s also no secret that traditional networking methods – drinks after work or schmoozing over cocktails – can conjure negative images for some.
Now, however, a host of new apps based on the successful design of dating apps are trying to change the way we network.
Earlier this year Tinder unveiled a new app called Ripple, where users can swipe right to be connected to like-minded professionals they might then meet in real life. Bumble Bizz, which launched last year, works in much the same way, but with a twist that aims to empower women: while there are male users on the site, the female users have to reach out first to make a connection.
And Shapr, which was created by the entrepreneur behind a popular French dating site, has been around in its current form since 2016.
The app, which limits the number of swipes users can do per day with the aim of establishing quality connections over quantity, has a million users. There were 100,000 sign-ups in February alone, according to head of PR and brand development Mandy Menaker.
She says 72% of users come from the US, UK and Canada combined.