Today's the day, you're attending a search fund conference, networking in a room filled with investors, attorneys, and other searchers all interested in the exciting possibilities of search. A stranger walks up to you and immediately says, "Hey, I just got here. I need $$$. Got some?" You shrug off that person and then spend some more quality time networking. Your having an interesting conversation that's helping you resolve an important issue for you, when another person interrupts with, "Hey, are you interested in a brand new timeshare in Des Moines?" You don't want to be at that conference -- neither do we.

Our mission is to have a vibrant and helpful culture where community members share their experience, best practices, tips, industry news and knowledge. Together, we can make the grinding process of learning about search funds, searching for a business to buy and operating that business more efficient -- and making it a lot less lonely.

You'll meet real people on Searchfunder with whom you can network. In many ways, it's like a search fund conference at your fingertips. Thus, it's important that you build your credibility within the community. To that end, while it may seem tempting, we strongly recommend avoiding your first post being something like "Hey, I just signed on to this community. I need $$$." If you follow the steps below, you'll start off on the right footing. (For those seeking investors, click [redacted]). We also strongly recommend against posts or comments unrelated to search fund activities that hijack conversations.

For our most recent update to these tips, we have added a Step 4 - Be a positive contributor. As the community grows, we want it to continue to be a welcoming, supportive and inclusive place for all.

To learn more about our community, click here.

Step 1: Browse past posts

We recommend first browsing posts to see what previous questions and answers have been asked and answered. There are several ways to browse through posts on Searchfunder:

    1) Scroll through your news feed on your Timeline (home) page. At the bottom of interesting posts, you'll find a tag. Click that tag for other content on that topic.

    2) On the left side of the main menu under discussions, click browse posts by tag. To learn more about tags, click here: Playing Tag

    3) Use the "search users and posts" bar at the top of your page, to the right of our scampering squirrel. To learn more about the search feature, click here.

Step 2: Like or Comment on a Post

If a post is helpful to you, the preferred practice is to Like the post. This quick step gives happy kudos to the person who wrote the post. Also, Liking elevates the post in the news feed. Elevated posts help to educate other searchers and also serves as a signal to the team about the topics of greatest interest to you so that we can locate additional content or resources for the community.

To comment on a post, click on the white space beneath the post, type your comment and then click post. The best comments tend to be congratulatory, helpful, informative and/or constructive. It's okay to disagree in a respectful manner.

To tag someone in a post or comment, use the Shift-6 or ^ key. Click here for more info. Please avoid putting your contact info in comments/posts.

To report SPAM or other issues with a comment, you may click the Report button. For more info, please see here.

If your post(s) or comment(s) receives too many reports, your post or comment may be automatically removed and/or your account suspended. Your account may be suspended temporarily or permanently. If, in the rare situation, your account is reinstated, you must re-register and begin the process of earning free access credits anew.

Step 3: Create a post or post a deal.

To create a post, click on the white space under the green toolbar, that says, "What is Your Question." If this option is not available to you, you may post a deal. To learn how to post a deal, click here.

To learn how to select a group for your post, click here.

For additional posting options -- like inserting pictures and hyperlinks, please see Punch Up Your Posts

Step 4: Be a positive contributor

Searchfunder is a community for individuals trying to do one of the hardest tasks of their careers -- search for, negotiate and purchase a company that they will then operate and grow. Although we have our terms of service, we set the bar far, far higher. (We're sure you've been on -- and perhaps quit -- a social media platform where folks are rude, snippy, snarky, self-serving, go on tirades or use profanity. Don't do that!) Please treat others like they would wish to be treated on their best day. Also, remember that what you might say in casual conversation can unintentionally come across as terse or snarky when written online. It's okay to disagree and bring new/different perspectives to a discussion. At the same time, take care that your words reflect a positive, helpful intent.

We like to think of Searchfunder as a conference in your pajamas. To that end, if you wouldn't say it at a conference, then it's probably best to refrain from saying it here. If you ever doubt it, don't submit it. Here's some guidance:

* Respect others. Respect yourself. Respect your search fund community.

* Be kind. Be honest.

* Be generous in sharing your knowledge.

* Be giving in your listening. Listen to learn and understand, not to win.

* Ask questions.

* Try your best to pay it forward.

If you have feedback or this post was helpful to you, please Comment or click the Like button below.