Dating apps always have beautiful stories that lead to pretty engagement photos and cheaper rent. This time with Shapr, there’s no “they got married and moved in” but rather their careers took off using this app. Shapr is a networking app that helps you connect with nearby professionals who share your interests. We spoke with Olakunle Oladehin and Akash Ghai, two Shapr users based in New York who share how the app has made an impact in their professional lives.
Olakunle Oladehin is a Harvard-educated scientist who now leads nonprofit Everybody Dance Now! He started using Shapr while switching careers, after being offered a role as Executive Director of a hip-hop nonprofit after a career in science. Shapr helped Olakunle to connect with others in the arts education world who were open to sharing books, tips and ideas to get him started. Olakunle says using Shapr was an eye-opening experience, and that he recommends the app to others:
"Set a goal for yourself to meet at least one new person a week, and everyday if you can. These conversations will inspire you and help you on your own path, whatever that may be." Olakunle adds that he has made the app an everyday habit, swiping through his daily batch of profiles as part of his morning routine.
So how does the app work? Each day, Shapr curates a list of 10-15 relevant professionals in your area, based on an algorithm that accounts for your personal and professional interests, job title and location. Your best matches are delivered straight to your phone where you can swipe easily and anonymously in less than a minute. And, of course, if there’s a match, you can start talking right away.
"A conversation off Shapr might not lead to something, but a little connection or moment where you discover a common interest or learn something new can leave you happy the rest of the day," said London-transplant Akash Ghai, founder of D3, a firm that helps companies drive positive social impact. Akash starting using the app to connect with potential new business, but has found these conversations to be the highlight of his week.
"I've been in the nonprofit, international development sector for a long time, and left my last role quite disenchanted by what I had come across. Connecting with likeminded individuals, who have the same practical approach and who support our mission has been validating and uplifting." Akash adds that he regularly meets users for coffee in New York, trying to explore local coffee shops around Manhattan at the same time.
Over 300,000 people have started using Shapr to connect with inspiring professionals, including tens of thousands of people in New York. Some find ideas and inspiration, others find co-founders, business or career opportunities, mentors or friends in a new city.
Think of Shapr like another daily ritual, and adopt a healthier and more mindful networking habit. So go on—get out there and meet the right people waiting to meet you. Download Shapr for iOS or Android and start connecting today.
This post is brought to you by Shapr.