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Is Networking As Important As It Sounds? Yes, It Is.

Churchill, FDR, Stalin Networking The Future At Yalta Summit, 1945. via

Churchill, FDR, Stalin Networking The Future At Yalta Summit, 1945.

Before you yawn off another self-hyping internet noise maker, consider this:

Work used to mean show up, do the job, and go home.

Then it became get an education, show up, do the job, and go home.

The day gets longer when you start attending job events after work.

It gets longer still when you start researching your next job.

What about the people you meet along the way? They are the reason for networking.

They are the network. 

The highlight of the class is the network of those who’ve taken the class too. We meet regularly and exchange progress stories. I’ve blogged several of the members.

One alumna, Fay Putnam, opened up her extraordinary network when Alexander Technique readers checked in to read the post about her. The number of visitors made me sit up straight and take notice.

  • The good news about networking is finding ways to do things you once thought impossible. I’m a member of Willamette Writers, the biggest writing group in Oregon.

The once a month meeting draws writers far and wide. If I were a better networker I’d show up early and stay late. Instead, I get to the Old Church in downtown Portland after the meetings start, snag a few cookies, take a seat and listen.

A few months back I met Walt Duddington. He started reading BoomerPDX and emailed, “I’ve dropped in a few times on your blog since then, and have enjoyed your keen observations on life.”

This led to an invitation to speak at a gathering he hosts this Thursday, 8 in the morning at the Buffalo Gap Saloon. Welldiggers Professional Networking and I will spend an hour together on the topic of Portland Baby Boomers.

  • Networking with Walt led to an email introduction to Joshua Waldman, the author of Job Searching With Social Media For Dummies. He’s not a boomer, but go ahead and grandfather him in. The right boomer instincts make all the difference.

Joshua walks the walk. When we talked, he showed great communication skills and patience, not an easy thing when the other party talks over you and goes on tangents. He passed the boomerpdx conversation test with ease.

He pointed me toward his website, Career Enlightenment, where I saw one of his programs, “Veteran Employment Programs.” How well does he understand veterans? This well:

An officer, returning home, with experience managing hundreds of troops, responsible for millions of dollars worth of assets in hostile territory, comes home and is asked to apply at a local gas station.” 

Sound too familiar? Mr. Waldman sees the light at the end of the tunnel just fine. Click the video at the top of the page for proof. Coming soon is a boomerpdx review of The Age Advantage, a course for boomers and social media.

  • Does anyone today have doubts about the benefits of exercise? If you belong to a gym, then you know more’s going on than pushing and pulling weights. I met Ron Weber at 24Hour Fitness.

Mr. Weber is one of the few victims of Agent Orange who’ve pushed the VA to recognize the cause and effect of herbicide damage. With his help, and networking, more will have a chance.

Through Mr. Weber I made an email introduction with documentary film maker Bob ,”Hawkeye”, Collins. His current project is an investigation of the VA protocols and the treatment of veterans and their families. Timely? Couldn’t be more timely.

We meet in real time tomorrow. This is a sample of Mr. Collins’ work.

Networking is the act of putting yourself ‘out there.’ Some do it better than others, but all recognize the effort.

When you ask, “Why bother networking,” who’s listening?

Ask “What has networking done for me,” after you’ve made an effort. The results will sit in plain sight.

Click the highlighted text and you’ll find others who’ve asked, and answered, the same question.



About David Gillaspie
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