Often, advice from the right people is worth more than what you read in books or what you learn inside the classroom. Why read a textbook when you can receive first-hand information from someone who’s done it before? Of course, getting mentored by top individuals isn’t always easy. Time differences and distance can get in the way, and setting up meetings can take up a lot of time and effort. Sure, you can try to use email to touch base with potential mentors, but with the tons of spam and other emails coming in, yours could easily get lost in clutter, especially if that person doesn’t really know you.
Enter Clarity, a service that connects advice-seeking users to thought leaders and experienced individuals. You can sign up using you Facebook account and submit questions on a specific topic. Clarity will then suggest advisors that can provide insights on your given topic. Once you pick an expert to get advice from, simply hit the “Request a Call” button to submit a call request. Some thought leaders charge for their time, and for these cases, Clarity will ask you to submit your credit card information. You’ll also be asked to enter a callback time, where you can put your times of availability. When your phone rings with the number “415-625-0833″, it means that the expert is calling you, and you can start conversing away.
If you’re a thought leader and you’re willing to share insights and advice, you can create an account with Clarity and fill out a mini resume that users will see. You have the option of setting a rate for your time, and users will be charged that amount when they request a call. You can choose not to charge anything for call time, or you can also donate your earnings to a charity of your choice. Once you completed your profile, you’ll get a unique Clarity URL with the format http://clarity.fm/[firstname][lastname]. You can share your URL via social media, and you can also submit your profile that will be reviewed for the directory. The service streamlines the process of scheduling phone appointments by giving you a user-friendly interface that allows you to schedule and make calls. You’ll be able to queue calls and keep track of the people that you need to call to make sure that everyone will be taken care of. As Clarity’s website puts it, “Whether you want to use Clarity for managing office hours or for making calls while waiting at the airport, we make it simple to define windows of availability and let people all over the world schedule that time.” Clarity ensures number privacy by dialing the expert first, before connecting to the user so that the expert’s personal number isn’t shown.
Clarity is definitely a boon for advice-seekers and experts alike. The former can effectively pick the brains of competent individuals to help them move forward, while thought leaders (such as speakers, experts, etc) will be able to share their advice to people that need it most and even get paid for it (if they want).