Networking defined and why it matters

27 07 2011

Find out how I define networking and why I think it matters by watching the interview I did with Steve Piazzale, Ph.D., the host of  “You’re Hired!”

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To whom do I write the thank you card?

25 11 2010

As tough as things have been for most of us these past few years (we’re definitely included in this), I feel that I have so much for which to be grateful this Thanksgiving and now just need to know to whom I write the thank you card?

Between finally getting out of dreary and “frosty” Seattle, thanks to Keith (my incredibly creative and talented husband) landing an amazing opportunity at what we’re pretty certain is his dream interactive agency in San Francisco, and a healthy and happy enough circle of family and friends, I thought I had been blessed enough. However, by seriously shaking things up in our lives and shifting the energy around this year, it appears the universe is now directing some of that famous California sunshine on the many seeds I’ve planted these past few years.

So, why do I want to share some of what I have to be grateful for today? Well, beside it being Thanksgiving, and simply wanting to share my excitement over recent events, I think it is worth explaining that the type of content creation, publicity and media exposure I share below demonstrates what I can also do for my clients. It took plenty of hard, smart and efficient work, and a little bit of good fortune, but it was mainly strategy, tactics and persistent follow-up that made most of what I share below happen.

I'm at a networking event--Now What??? by Sandy Jones-KaminskiSome of the most significant sprouting is around my writing and content creation in the form of  the little seedling that is my book, “I’m at a Networking Event–Now What???” I’d say this little sprout is well on its way to becoming a nice sturdy plant and I have my incredible network of friends, family, contacts, colleagues and fans for helping me get the word out and consistently supporting my efforts in promoting my networking manifesto.  Plus, doing a few 12 Rules of Effective Networking webinars for some non-profits has brought me more good karma than I ever could have imagined and has enabled me to reach way more people than the number of folks that have attended my PIF (pay it forward) Parties to date.  I’ve seen the direct correlation between those webinars and the opportunities that have recently come my way, as well as the new Facebook fans, Twitter followers, Bella Domain Networking group members on LinkedIn, email/blog subscribers and more.

Earlier this year, I was also fortunate enough to get selected as a columnist for WomenEntrepreneur.com where recently my third article for my Networking is Connecting column was recently picked up by FoxNews.com (of all places).  Then, within a few days of that happening, and thanks to a Google alert, I found out that my book was in the #1 spot on the Inc.com 2010 Holiday Gift Guide for business books! Whah?? Such a gift! And with any luck, I’ll soon get to break-even with my publisher, Mitchell Levy of Happy About!

(Soon after the above we noticed that my book was finally ranked less than 100K on Amazon again and was ranked #44,867! It had been in the coveted less-than-100K rank soon after it was released, about a year ago this month.)

Lastly, after spotting the Inc.com recognition, and a few days of jumping up and down with excitement, yesterday, I learned (thanks to another Google alert) that, most likely due to all the activity around these things, I was the featured columnist on the WomenEntrepreneur.com home page (see below)! Sweet!

Now, to whom do you think I should write the thank you card?? Kind of a hard call isn’t it? 😉 Happy Thanksgiving all and please let me know if there is anything I can help YOU be thankful for by next Turkey Day!

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Pay It Forward Networking – Denver style

12 04 2010

What a great experience I had in Denver last week while co-presenting (along with SMPS board member, Stan Wagner) to the Denver chapter of the SMPS during a 3 hour workshop on the importance networking plays in truly effective business development. We used quite a bit of content from my book, and also incorporated plenty of new information and tactics for this knowledgeable and  sophisticated group.

Our agenda for the event looked like this:

I. Recap of BD Process – 1:00 – 1:15
A.  Sales cycle
B.  Where You Fit In
C.  Reality Check
II. Your Personal Brand –  1:15 – 1:45
A.  Definition
B.  What it is/isn’t
C.  Where do you use it?
III. The Productive Network – 1:45 – 2:30
A.  Network model
B.  What it is/what it isn’t
C.  Etiquette and Best Practices
IV.  Break – 2:30 – 2:45
V.   Building Your Network – 2:30 – 3:45
A. Strategy
B. Techniques
C. Worksheet
VI.  Question and Answer – 3:45 – 4:00

The session was then followed by the first Pay It Forward Networking Party

Have a PIF Party!

in the Mile High City where workshop attendees and other SMPS members connected and networked by learning what each was currently working on and the things they needed help with right now. You can read more about the event HERE, and as soon as we receive our session feedback forms, I’ll hopefully be able to share some great feedback here as well.

I’m looking forward to doing more of these for other SMPS chapters and various other professional associations across the country. Please contact me directly if you’d like to discuss your upcoming event or feel free to share this blog post with others you think might be interested in inviting me to present to their group. You can just click HERE to email me and/or request a copy of my speakers packet.

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San Francisco Free Love a.k.a A PIF PARTY

19 01 2010

It’s time to take Bella Domain’s PIF Party concept on the road and the first out-of-state party will be in San Francisco on Thursday, February 11, 2010 at Roe on Howard over near Mission and 3rd. Yes, considering I lived there for almost 5 years not too long ago, and still love that town, how could it not be my first choice?!  You can or go to our PIF Parties page to learn more. Please help us spread the word about this event, and, as always, thanks for supporting the pay it forward way!

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A more effective strategy for networking

6 01 2010

Yesterday ended with my little Bella Domain WordPress site hitting 11,000 total visits since launch (woo hoo!) and me finding an awesome book review of “I’m at a Networking Event–Now What???” from Steve Paul the blogger behind and founder of Notes From the Job Search Seattle. Here’s what he wrote about my recommended strategy for networking:

Tuesday, January 5, 2010 Pay it Forward

One of the members of our Tuesday group brought a book to our group last week that brought a bunch of ideas together for me and added some new ones that fundamentally change how I think networking should be done. It’s stuff that I’ve vaguely thought, and haphazardly tried, but have always thought was what I shouldn’t do.

Networking events have always felt like middle school dances. You know the ones, the boys are on one side and the girls are on the other, (substitute recruiters and job seekers) and each side spends pretty much the entire night talking about how much success they always have with the other side, just not venturing forth and testing those waters. 😉

I’m starting to follow a new blog, it’s on my list: Bella Domain. This is by the person who wrote I’m at a Networking Event, Now What?Sandy Jones-Kaminski. In the book, she postulates that the focus of networking events should not be “What can you do for me?” She proposes that every networking event be approached as an opportunity to ask, “What can I do for you?” Things like passing out business cards aggressively are strongly discouraged, instead, listen to the answers people provide and only share your card with people you actually might be able to help. She suggests an attitude of “Pay it Forward” for the event. For those that missed the book and movie, pay it forward is the idea of doing something for someone else as a way of saying thank you for things that others have already done for you. Instead of paying back what you owe, pay it forward to the next person. Turns out there is even research suggesting that this is a more effective strategy when approaching others in a networking mode. Immediately, it allows for a focus on what others are doing, rather than prattling on about how great we are when we probably aren’t all that convinced of our value to begin with. Most of us can get very convinced of our ability to solve problems within our area, so when someone says, “I need help with…. And describes what we know about, we can get into problem solving mode in a heartbeat, and then we don’t need to tell people we’re super, we just demonstrate it. Way more fun!

At any rate, Sandy’s book is outstanding. It’s one of those books that brings together a bunch of well known information and comes up with a new conclusion that feels much better than what I thought previously and completely demystifies what was a very intimidating event.

(post link – http://bit.ly/SPreview0110)

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Back to the Bay Area – Feb 2010

4 01 2010

Announcement:

Happy New Year! And, just in time for Valentine’s Day, I wanted to share that I’ll be in the Bay Area again for this book related event on Wed, 2/10/2010 (cool date, eh?), and then another book/Pay It Forward/Valentine’s themed happy hour event in San Fran on Thur, Feb 11.

Why not show some luv to your network and try to attend if you’re in the area or maybe consider this an easy “pay it forward” and help spread the word with your peeps in San Fran/Silicon Valley? 🙂 Thanks a bunch and watch for the announcement on the SF location which will be confirmed soon! p.s. If I haven’t spammed you about my book yet, here’s the link on Amazon.

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Why I wrote “I’m at a Networking Event–Now What???”

1 01 2010

I found the email below in my Inbox this morning and it sure started my day off on a happy note! Salil describes exactly what I was hoping to achieve by writing my book, I’m at a Networking Event–Now What???I'm at a networking event--Now What??? by Sandy Jones-Kaminski

Soon after I read this, I contacted him to thank him for taking the time to write and requested his permission to share it with y’all. And, hey, if you read my book, and feel the same way Salil does, please become a fan of my book on Facebook. Thanks so much and Happy New Year all! 🙂

From: Salil
Date: Thu, Dec 31, 2009
Subject: I’m at a networking event
To: sandy@belladomain.com

Hello Sandy,

I recently purchased this ebook from Michelle Levy’s website and I am so happy with my decision. I had always struggled with networking events. I heard a lot about the importance of networking events but never knew what to do and how to initiate any dialogue or even take it to the next step/level. Some of your openers were very helpful. I also liked the specific action items you included in each chapter. The section on hosting your own networking event was also a great idea. I started acting on those and reached out to couple of people while standing in a queue. Prior to reading this book, I could never think of reaching out to people on my own. But to my surprise, the experience was very positive and I had very useful and fruitful discussion with those people. I am also thinking of hosting an event sponsored by my company early next week and I already have a theme in mind.

So once again, thank you for the great write up. I am definitely recommending this book to other people who I know are struggling with the same issue.

Salil.

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