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Letters…Oh We Have Letters… January 5, 2017

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Photo Credit: Nieve44/La Luz

To help improve your networking results you must have a readily-available library of letters (emails).  By library I don’t mean tens or even hundreds of letters, you can get by with three good ones which can serve as a template to be customized for each individual. The three letters you must have are:

  1. Introduction/request for meeting  I covered this in a previous post entitled Securing an Appointment. Keep the email brief and to the point and do not forget to let the recipient know when you plan to follow up, this increases your chances of reaching them quickly and points to attention to detail.
  2. Appointment confirmation 24 hours before your scheduled meeting send a quick note verifying the date, time and place of your meeting and possibly a photo or description of yourself or a description of what you will be wearing.
  3. Thank you Of course no cycle of networking would be complete without the proper thank you note.  Personalize the note by referencing some particular part of your conversation you found interesting or especially helpful.  Not only will this once again show attention to detail but it will also show your contact that you took the time to write a personal note instead of using a template.  In certain situations the use of  a hand written note provides a little extra “umph.”

I usually write each note in word or some other off line application in order to make the editing process a bit easier.  If you prefer to compose directly in your email client I would suggest you DO NOT populate the” TO” field with any email address information, this will help prevent an accidental send due to a stray mouse click. (been there-done that)

I’d suggest keeping a copy of each letter you send for a few months then periodically purge your email and or Word documents, sometimes you write that one extra special sentence which can later be re-purposed for another situation.

Until next time….

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Holiday Networking Galore December 1, 2016

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red-christmas-ball-in-snow-1386092658qdjWith the start of the holiday season comes a bevy of opportunities to network with more people than ever, spread the word of what you are looking for in your next opportunity and set up those all important face-to-face meetings. You will find that people are naturally more giving during the holiday season so your hit rate for these meetings should be higher which translates into more meetings for you, leading you one step closer on your journey to your final destination.

There are sure to be gatherings of all sorts for you to take advantage of, many of them free or low-cost. Consider this potential list.

  1. Professional Organizations you may belong to.  Make sure you check their website to get all the details.
  2. Organizations such as Digital Rochester. Festivus takes place next week! The August Group/VPNG holiday party is December 20!  Register Here.
  3. Neighbors and neighborhood associations.   If you live in a condo or town house contact your association president and find out if they are planning anything.  If not offer to plan it yourself, this alone could provide you with a wealth of contacts and help others at the same time.
  4. Volunteer.  Local soup kitchens tend to get a little busier this year give them a call and see how you can help.
  5. Check with your local church regarding giving trees, food baskets, etc offer to coordinate.
  6. Ring bells for the Salvation Army.
  7. Corporate parties.  If your spouse is employed make sure you plan to attend any office gathering that is open to you.
  8. Social/Service organizations you belong to like Lions Club, Rotary, etc

Until next time….

Be Thankful November 17, 2016

Posted by robewanow in Family, General, Job Search.
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Hard to believe but next week is Thanksgiving.  I like many will be celebrating with family so I there will be no post next week.  Not that I have been very consistent this year.  (Hey – there’s a resolution for 2017 get better with the blog posts Rob!!)

Take some time over the next few days and think to yourself – What am I thankful for?

Think of all the wonderful people you have met along your journey.  Remember the “journey” never really ends.

Think of those you have helped along the way – there are probably more than you realize.

Look at your family – how blessed are you to have them and how blessed are they to have you?

Appreciate the gifts you have been given and the talents you have to offer.

Remember there are many in the world who are less fortunate, we all have much to be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving.

My thanks to you for reading.

Mayonnaise Jar and 2 Beers March 24, 2016

Posted by robewanow in Family, General, Job Search, Work.
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Here is one of my favorite posts.  I wanted to re-post this so you may either enjoy it again or enjoy it for the first time.

Until next time….

Mayonnaise Jar and 2 Beers

When things in your life seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a
day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and the 2 Beers.

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front
of him. When the class began, he wordlessly picked up a very large and
empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then
asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.

The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar
He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between
the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They
agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of
course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar
was full. The students responded with a unanimous ‘yes.’

The professor then produced two Beers from under the table and poured the
entire contents into the jar effectively filling the empty space between
the sand. The students laughed.

‘Now,’ said the professor as the laughter subsided, ‘I want you to
recognize that this jar represents your life. The golf balls are the
important things—your family, your children, your health, your friends
and your favorite passions—and if everything else was lost and only they
remained, your life would still be full.

The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house and
your car.

The sand is everything else—the small stuff.

‘If you put the sand into the jar first,’ he continued, ‘there is no room
for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life. If you spend all
your time and energy on the small stuff you will never have room for the
things that are important to you.

‘Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Spend
time with your children. Spend time with your parents. Visit with
grandparents. Take time to get medical checkups. Take your spouse out to
dinner. Play another 18. There will always be time to clean the house and
fix the disposal. Take care of the golf ball first—the things that really
matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.’

One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the Beer represented.
The professor smiled and said, ‘I’m glad you asked.’ The Beer just shows
you that no matter how full your life may seem, there’s always room for a
couple of Beers with a friend.’

Give Thanks November 19, 2015

Posted by robewanow in Family, General, Job Search, Uncategorized.
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Hard to believe but next week is Thanksgiving.  I like many will be celebrating with family so I there will be no post next week.  Not that I have been very consistent this year.  (Hey – there’s a resolution for 2016 get better with the blog posts Rob!!)

Take some time over the next few days and think to yourself – What am I thankful for?

Think of all the wonderful people you have met along your journey.  Remember the “journey” never really ends.

Think of those you have helped along the way – there are probably more than you realize.

Look at your family – how blessed are you to have them and how blessed are they to have you?

Appreciate the gifts you have been given and the talents you have to offer.

Remember there are many in the world who are less fortunate, we all have much to be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving.

My thanks to you for reading.

You Can be a Hero September 18, 2014

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Back in February I mentioned I was reading Hero by Rhonda Byrne author of The Secret and The Power.

I finally finished the book the other day.  No it’s not that long of a book only a little over 200 pages but I found myself getting distracted with a number of other activities and then forgetting about it all together sometimes.  I ended up re-reading a good portion of it and will most likely read it again but this time in a shorter timeframe.  I found the core message of the book uplifting and inspiring.

The premise of the story is that we all have an inner hero, we all have powerful abilities inside us which enable us to achieve our dreams and overcome any obstacle in our way. However in order to fully realize these abilities, which frequently get pushed aside or buried deep within us and forgotten we need to take the Hero’s journey.

Through the use of real life stories from famous people like Pete Carrol (Seattle Seahawks Coach) to the lesser known like Liz Murray (a young lady born to drug addicted parents, was homeless and willed herself to attend and graduate from Harvard).

The book ends not with great glory for those who take the hero’s journey but instead from those who benefit from someone who did.  For by taking the journey it brings you to a greater realization in that we are here to help others benefit from our journey; no matter what that journey produced.  A successful business launch, accomplishing a sports goal or dream, graduating college or finding a new job after a layoff.  These are all a hero’s journey and we are all uniquely positioned to help others learn and achieve their dreams if we just take the time to share what we experienced and learned.

Give the book a read, I am sure you will find it as motivational as I did.

By the way, please let me know how I can help you whether it’s regarding a job search,  networking, starting a business or anything related to marketing.

Until next time….

Chaos At The Airport July 10, 2014

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Last week we took a family vacation to Mexico.  It’s the first time my kids were there and the second time for my wife and myself (the last time being the mid nineties – Ugh long time ago).

We had a great time toured the ruins, learned about the Mayan people and culture, hiked the jungle and even got to swim with the dolphins. All in all a great family vacation.  Then…..it was time to come home, by far the hardest part of any family vacation.

We went through the regular ritual packed most of the stuff the night before, verified our pick up time, flight details etc.  Everything was in line.

Then we got to the airport. We walked into complete chaos.  Lines of people everywhere with no beginning or end in sight.  I could see the US Airways counter but had no idea how to get there.  Which line do I stand in, the one snaking back and forth across the entire width of the building with about 250 people in it or the one with only 50 people in it?  I had no idea I was directionless.  Then a moment of hope, an airport employee asked if I needed help.  “Yes!” I said.  He immediately ushered me over to the self service check in terminal for US Air which I would have never found because the see of humanity in the airport obscured it.   Boarding passes in hand we headed over to the check in counter where the line was a mere 20 people but plenty of agents working.  The check in process was smooth and uneventful and in the end we made it to our gate in plenty of time.

Does this sound familiar?  Think about the time you were laid off.  You experienced chaos at the airport.  Most likely you had no idea where to turn, what direction to go, how to get moving on your job search.  Then I’m betting somewhere along the line you ran into your own version of the airport employee I mentioned above, the one who offered to help point you in the right direction and get you started.

Remember how relieved you were to finally have a sense of direction?  Some hope that you will make it to your gate on time?  The next time you hear about someone losing their job or needing that piece of advice, take the initiative and be that airport employee.  Even the simplest advice or suggestion can go a long way in helping that person make their gate on time.

Until next time….

 

Hero February 27, 2014

Posted by robewanow in General, Job Search, Rants and Raves.
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I am reading Hero by Rhonda Byrne, author of The Secret and The Power. Most people fall in one of two categories when you mention these books.  They call it hogwash or they truly believe in it and use it.

I found The Secret very inspiring but so far Hero has it beat.  Relying on real life success stories (not just money related) from people such as Pete Carroll (Seattle Seahawks Coach) Liz Murray, a young lady born to drug addicted parents who willed herself to attend and graduate from Harvard and John Paul DeJoria from John Paul Mitchell fame who, incidentally was a member of a street gang in East Los Angeles as a young boy.

The premise of the story is that we all have an inner hero, we all have powerful abilities inside us which enable us to achieve our dreams and overcome any obstacle in our way. However in order to fully realize these abilities, which frequently get pushed aside or buried deep within us and forgotten we need to take the Hero’s journey much like the people mentioned above did.

So far I am up for taking the journey I figure it can only lead to continued/more good things.  Are you?

I will keep you posted.

Until next time….

Memorial Day May 24, 2012

Posted by robewanow in Family, General, Uncategorized.
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I am going to depart from my normal theme this week.  I received an email this morning from one of my vendor/partners wishing me a happy Memorial Day.  It’s not everyday you get a message specifically targeted to Memorial Day.  Most of the time we hear about it on the news as “The official start of summer” along with coverage of parades, interviews with veterans and reminders of what they have sacrificed for us.  All good stuff.

What struck me about this email wish was how it completely wrapped both the idea of the start of summer and the gratitude we owe our veterans into a single powerful message.  I hope you  enjoy it as much as I did.  (Thanks to the folks at RES Exhibits for sending this to me) If the text is difficult to read click on the image.

Until next week….Enjoy and remember this Memorial Day weekend.

NRM April 28, 2009

Posted by robewanow in General, Job Search.
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YUP, I made up a new acronym.

NRM = Network Relationship Management.  Ok its not really original all I did was take an existing acronym CRM = Customer Relationship Management and replace a word.

So what is CRM?

Companies large and small actively communicate with their customer base in an effort to solicit feedback for product development, sell additional products and services and remain “top-of-mind” with their customer base.  These activities help solidify the Customer Relationship.

Why should your job search be any different?

Enter Network Relationship Management which seeks to achieve the same goals mentioned above with those in your personal network.

Consider the following comparisons.

  1. Solicit feedback for product development – when you keep in touch with your network you gather intelligence on improving your #1 product – YOU.  What can you do better?  More of?  Less of?  How can you differentiate yourself?
  2. Sell additional products and services – through your regular communications you may uncover the opportunity to volunteer to serve on a board, chair a committee or share your talents in another way with an organization.
  3. Remain top of mind – this goes without saying.  Regular contact with your network keeps your name fresh in their mind so when an opportunity arises they will think of you first.  I have had first hand success with this as a result of my regular communications.

Next week I will discuss some tools and techniques to help you manage your network relationships.

Until next week….