is creating new approaches to human connection

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Hey, I'm Steve Dean, and I'm on a mission. 

I want to take the fractured and isolating dating ecosystem and turn it into something that will drive all of us toward better, healthier dating and relationship outcomes, whether we're looking for a sexy Friday fling, fun friends in a new city, a lifelong romantic partner, or multiple partners in any configurations we choose.

To do this, I'll need your help. 

By supporting me on Patreon, you'll instantly become part of the Dateworking network, which will get you access to new date ideas, relationship insights, research, and founder insights. As I build out the Dateworking membership community, you may be invited to things like group dates, dating & relationship quizzes, gamses, and conversational guides, custom-designed intimate getaways, relationship wellness retreats, matchmaking events, slow dating gatherings, and a collaborative dating network experiment that I've been testing out behind the scenes for the last 4 years.

I can't do this alone,

But we can do it together.

Your insights, feedback, criticisms, and testimonials will inform all the founders, movement leaders, event organizers, and content creators I'm pulling into the Dateworking ecosystem so that our efforts can collectively align to make dating into something we truly love, and make relationships into things we can navigate with dexterity and antifragility, putting the days of swiping, ghosting, frustration, and anxiety behind us.

Why am I choosing to do this now?

Since 2011, I have been a superconnector, community builder, and dating industry consultant & speaker, helping people find everything from jobs, to roommates, to romantic partners, to new events, date ideas, and communities in whichever city they're in. 

Through my dating consultancy, Dateworking, which I founded in 2011, I've been coaching online daters in dating and relationship best practices, advising dating startups, and providing thought leadership to the dating industry.

In 2014, I started the Dateworking publication on Medium, tracing out the trends, apps, and habits at the cutting edge of dating, sex, and relationships.

In 2017, I began hosting the Dateworking Podcast (formerly called Modern Connection) which explores the tools, practices, people, and movements that generate deepened human connection during this time of extreme flux in our relationships, employment, housing, and society.

In 2019, I began cohosting The Nerds and The Bees, a live edu-comedy series that teaches audiences new mental models around dating and relationships and the tools needed to navigate modern dating with dexterity and joy. 

As part of my superconnecting, I've used 250+ dating apps, gone on 300+ dates, met 5,000+ people, and brought hundreds of thousands of people together by creating communities, events, meetups, conferences, group dates, dinners, and coworking sessions nearly every day of the week across multiple cities.

In a time of digitally distraction and isolation, I truly love creating moments of groundedness and connection where people can share their stories, feel seen and heard, and become inspired to build new friendships, startups, and movements.

Creating connection is what I do. It’s what I live for. I host salonsdinnersmeetups, and coworking sessions nearly every night of the week across multiple cities in order to bring people together from all over the world to share their stories and build new friendships. My greatest joy comes when I can connect people so perfectly that their newfound interactions send positive ripples into the world.

Everywhere I go, I seek to create meshed networks of strong human relationships. I strive to see people for all they are and all they represent -- their skills, their values, their pain, their lived experiences, and their aspirations -- and use these privileged lenses of insight to connect them with one another in ways that amplify their energies, and shorten the distance between themselves and the realities they hope to create.

I want to keep doing this forever. I want to spend even more of my time creating the tools, resources, and events that people need in to become better connected.

And I’m using Patreon to make this happen.

To kick off 2020, I'm combining all that I've learned in the last decade, and all the relationships and insights that I've tirelessly cultivated, into an ecosystem that we can all have a stake in.  

With your help, we can pave the way forward to new approaches to dating and relationships that will make us wonder how and why we ever tolerated this past decade of swiping, flaking, ghosting, and wasted attention.

Let's get this started.

P.S. — You can read up on what I've been writing about these topics on my Medium page, or check out my specific articles, projects, and events below:

Current Projects
• Dateworking Podcast — Seeking the philosophies and practices that help us stay connected to one another and feel deeply grounded in a world where relationships, norms, expectations, jobs, housing, and even facts are constantly in flux. How do we live well, and connect fully during our short lives on this fragile planet? How can we use practical wisdom across all the relationships of our lives? How can we reimagine our thoughts, relationships and values at a time when society itself is being reimagined every day?

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Recent Projects
Hygge Dinners — I run a monthly gathering of those who are new to NYC or simply looking to make new friends in their city. I invite about 750-1000 people each month, host the event out of a large food court, and facilitate conversation by passing around questions to spark authenticity on little sticky notes.
NYC Salon — I co-run a biweekly series where we invite a fascinating speaker from somewhere in the world to come give a TED-style talk, about a topic in which they have unique niche experience, and then engage the audience with thematically-related activities. To date we've had 103 consecutive salons and grown our community to 4500+ individuals.
Nerds and the Bees — I cohost a live edu-comedy dating series that teaches audiences new mental models around dating and relationships and the tools needed to navigate modern dating with dexterity and joy.
• 10 Plates — I team up with a chef to host private 10-person dinners in which we invite the specific people we think could most benefit from knowing one another, then facilitate conversations designed to get them talking about the topics we believe would lead to the most creative synergy.

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Past Projects
• Jobsuitors — From 2011-2016, I cofounded a matchmaking platform for jobseekers and employers. We developed algorithms inspired by online dating apps to help identify points of compatibility as well as red flags between jobseekers and their prospective employers. At our peak, we had over 75 employers on the platform and over 4,000 jobseekers.
• Liminal Studios — In 2017 I helped creatives around the world ideate, incubate, and launch their artistic, technological, and socially impactful projects. The first project we shipped was VR World NYC, the hemisphere's largest virtual reality experience center.
• Polispace — Also in 2017, I launched a community of politically-active superconnectors to pool their collective skills and networks to bring together movement leaders and newly-awakened political activists to coordinate mass-scale action toward protecting and restoring the infrastructure of civic society.

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Communities I've Started / Stewarded
Cowork With Me — I created a Facebook group for freelancers and nomads who could post where they’re working each day and find others who want to join to keep them accountable and productive
Let's Play Magic — I created a small group for Magic: The Gathering fans to coordinate low-key booster drafts at people's apartments and offices around the city
Personal Development Nerds — Every month, about 40-60 of my friends and I gather to share our best strategies for personal growth and introduce one another to those who can help us most in our efforts
• NYC Sex-Positive & Polyamorous Community (unnamed for privacy) — my friends and I have built up a community of 700+ polyamorous, non-monogamous, sex-positive, and nonbinary folks who meet up regularly for community discussions and potlucks

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Events I've Hosted
Love Immersive — In March of 2019 I designed and hosted a 10-hour, choose-your-own-adventure interactive journey through the languages of love that spanned 6 floors of a Manhattan townhouse. My co-organizer and I called the event Love Immersive and invited over 50 volunteers and practitioners to showcase their creative capabilities, resulting in an evening of self-discovery, secret missions, hidden rooms, wandering wizards, art installations, and live music for our 450+ attendees.
Slow Dating workshop series — I invite 10-30 people to meet for creative, guided explorations of love languages and interpersonal connection.
• Mixed Reality Social Club / Soiree Thursdays — For most of 2017, my friends and I helped grow the nascent NYC virtual/augmented/mixed reality community by hosting events, talks, workshops, and immersive experiences
• Chronic Kneading — About twice a month, I gather 10-50 people together to practice different massage techniques on one another, creating a safe space for exploring the nuances of touch, self-care, boundary-setting, and preference vocalization. In the future, I'd like to partner with CBD shops and Cannabis dispensaries (where legal) to explore the ideal pairings of CBD and THC with massage modalities.

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Guides I've Made
I'm also an avid creator of resources and guides, including:
• events (
• housing (
• dating (
• networking (
• authentic conversation (
• non-traditional relationships (
• city exploration (

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My Publications
About Dating
The Friendship-First Approach to Dating
What I Encounter As An Online Dating Consultant
What are guys doing wrong when it comes to flirting?
What are some good online dating messages which are likely to get a response?
What are the best Tinder hacks?
Five Surprising and Interesting Uses for Tinder
How To Say “No” Without Lies, Flaking, or Fadeaways
Add This Line to Your Tinder Profile Right Now
After the Dating Apocalypse
NSA? FWB? BFF? We Need a New Lexicon for Modern Dating
The Purrfect Guide to Practicing Ethical Non-Meownogamy
100 Creative Date Ideas for Poor Cat People
About the Dating Industry and Modern Trends
Is there room to make a new dating app?
Where Does Your Attention Live?
Technology Is Killing Human Connection
The Two Greatest Failures of Modern Dating Apps
About Relationships
How do I have the “Are We Exclusive” talk?
15 Articles to Make You 15x Better at Relationships
How to Get Over a Breakup
Why Excel Sheet Relationships Work Better
Applying a Lean Startup Model to Relationships
Breaking into Nonmonogamy
Stop Trying to “Catch” Cheaters
About Careers & Networking
Become Your Own Personal Champion
5 Easy Ways to Get Over Imposter Syndrome to Get the Job You Want
Eyeball Game: Gamifying Extroversion
The Power of a Personal Connection
5 Secret Tools for the Superconnector
How to Land a Job at a Hot Startup
Handy Guide to NYC Startup & Tech Events
About Housing, Friendship, Life, & NYC
A New Yorker’s Guide to Finding Apartments and Roommates Questions to Spark Authenticity
Why the Golden Rule Is Terrible for Everyone
Worthwhile Places to Visit in NYC

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My Podcast & TV Appearances
• CBSN - That dating app profile you're swiping on may not actually be human
Modern Connection with Steve Dean
Dirty Sexy Monogamy with Gigi Engle and Mike Fishbein
Manwhore with Billy Procida - Dating Mistakes Edition
Laserfiche by the Economist - What Dating Can Teach Us About Boosting Efficiency at Work Podcast by Peter Schneider
Tinder Tales with David Piccolomini Portfolio Career Podcast with David Nebinski
Horizontal with Lila, with Lila Donnolo, Episode 82: 200 Dating Profiles
It's Time to Rethink Tech Recruiting with

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My Press Mentions
It's Time to Rethink Tech Recruiting -
The Entrepreneurs of Love - Marketwatch
What Your Psychologist Wants You to Know About Your Dating Apps -
True Love Is Waiting for You on Uber Yelp Quizup and All Your Other Apps - Fast Company
The Biggest Misconception About Polyamorous Relationships Finally Answered -
7 Polyamorous People on Overcoming Jealousy - Bustle
LSD Microdosing - Esquire
One Epic Chart Proves There's No Right Way to Be in a Relationship -
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