5 Articles About Networking Worth The Read

23 11 2011

With the hectic holiday season approaching, and all the opportunities for socializing and networking that go along with it, I wanted to share 5 articles I’ve come across that are definitely worth the read (yes, one is mine).

1) Here’s one about networking as “lifetime career insurance”

2) Quality versus quantity is always the way to go

3) Here’s one that discusses the difference between how men and women approach networking differently

4) The holiday season is NOT the time to pull back on your job search and with so many networking opportunities around them, it’s no wonder

5) What NOT to do while you’re out there networking this holiday season

Hope your takeaways from these help you enjoy the holidays just a little bit more. 🙂

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Networking is Connecting Columnist Available

10 01 2011

Looking for a columnist to write about effective networking for your business or career publication? WomenEntrepreneur.com is folding into Entrepreneur.com and they already have their fill of columnists, so I’m looking to find a new home for my Networking is Connecting column. Sandy Jones-Kaminski's Networking is Connecting column is availablePlease feel free to share this post with anyone you think might be interested and check out my bio and some of my articles via this link. Thanks!
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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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It’s not you, it’s them

10 11 2009

I just received confirmation that my first “real” book is NOW AVAILABLE ON AMAZON, so I felt it appropriate to commemorate the occasion with a blog post that explains why I wrote the book in the first place.

The first copy of "I'm at a Networking Event--Now What???" by Sandy Jones-Kaminski of Bella Domain, LLC

The 1st copy of "I'm at a Networking Event--Now What???"

Also, since I’ve started having to explain what my new book is about to total strangers (airplane seatmates, wedding table mates, and so far 1 press person – OMG!) I’ve become acutely aware of exactly what it is about the book that initially appeals to the folks that don’t know me or what I refer to as my “How do you not know this?” corner of the world. So, I thought I’d share a few of the questions I’ve been asked and how I answered them.

Stranger:  So, what’s your book about?

Me:  Well, the title is, “I’m at a Networking Event—Now What???” (I usually then pause and wait for the giggling to subside). It’s a practical guide to getting the most out of any networking event, and if you read it you’ll feel like you spent some time with a fairly entertaining, tell-it-like-it-is networking coach.

Stranger: What made you want to write a book about networking?

Me:  There were 2 things:

1)   I was tired of all the bad behavior I was encountering at the majority of the networking events I’d been attending and I also wanted to help the folks in the 80% group of the Pareto Principle out there that just don’t seem to be fans of the activity. I’ve found that besides some of them being shy, most usually aren’t fans as a result of having been on the receiving end of some of the aforementioned bad behavior such as watching someone scan the nametags of others while they’re supposedly listening to you, and

2)   Then, there’s the fairly well-documented phenomenon in the Seattle area called the “Seattle Freeze” (you can Google this) which relates to the arms-length-only friendliness of the Puget Sound area in general, and the lack of genuine welcome many new settlers to the area often experience.

Both factors motivated me to start hosting what I started calling Pay It Forward (PIF) Parties, and then I wrote a few white papers earlier this year on my “12 Rules of Networking.”

The response to the above generated lots of interest (1200+ downloads of my white paper), as well as the encouragement to write a book, and that gets us back to where I started.  As I was working on the book, I was always on the lookout for supporting evidence for my own theories and beliefs about networking best practices, and while I liked to think of them as rules (as in etiquette), I kept finding proof that they’re also the most effective.

For instance, one of the studies I site in the book comes from the folks at Upwardly Mobile Inc. and the Graziadio School of Business Management at Pepperdine University. They conducted a study on the habits of what they call, “elite networkers” and their behaviors as they relate to networking in general.

Finding worth sharing #1: 70% of executives credit networking as THE activity that leads to career opportunities, and 75% of study respondents said they spend fewer than two hours each week directly managing their networks. Bottom line: If done right, you can spend a manageable amount of time on it.

Have you actually developed reciprocal and quality relationships with your contacts? Can you count on them when you need a favor? Do they know that you’re there for them when they need the favor? These are the key questions most elite networkers can answer positively.

Finding worth sharing #2: Not surprisingly, the study notes that most people approach networking fairly ineffectively. They focus on quantity of contacts instead of the most important factor—the depth of the relationship (or my interpretation – trust between the 2 parties a.k.a. good social capital[1]).

I’ve noticed loads written about whether people will recommend you or not as the ideal measure, and while that matters if your only goal for networking is getting more leads (whether they be job or biz/sales related), I believe that good social capital should be the real goal. I strive to cultivate quality relationships that often turn into friendships where a natural by-product is that I know when/if I need some help or a favor I can unhesitatingly reach out and ask for what it is I need, actually receive it directly or indirectly, and then work to make certain that others know they can count on the same from me.

But back to the idea that “It’s not you, it’s them.” I also wrote my book because I wanted to encourage reluctant networkers to recognize that it’s not their fault that the person scanning the other nametags is doing so. You’re not boring — they’re just RUDE! And, I believe that we can help rehabilitate these people at the networking events we attend by “flipping the script,” and instead of being passive and waiting for someone to ask what brought you to the event, so that you can launch into what probably feels like a canned elevator pitch you may have even paid some coach to develop for you, you can act as if you’re walking into a gathering of your closest friends, and simply beat the other person to the punch and ask them what they’re working on these days and whether they need help with anything in their life right now. The idea is that by setting the example of showing genuine interest, and potential assistance, the recipient will hopefully follow your lead and respond in kind so you can actually have a meaningful conversation. And, if they don’t, you’ve just learned that you should save yourself a whole bunch of time, follow-up and trouble, and politely move on.

pif_logo1Based on my own experience, many of the Google alerts I’ve been reading, and the popularity of the PIF Parties I’ve hosted or attended, offering help to others first appears to be an approach that’s really starting to catch on. Hopefully, my book will provide the encouragement to get folks confidently back out there, and maybe I’ll get to meet them at an event soon because, quite frankly, I’m a little tired of running into most of the same usual suspects (a.k.a the 20%) at the networking events I attend. 😉 I welcome the opportunity to meet some new people in the New Year!

[1] Social capital is defined as the resources such as information, ideas or support that individuals are able to procure by virtue of their relationships with other people. The uniqueness of social capital is that it is relational…it only exists when it is SHARED.


 

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Out of pocket, but still on the grid

18 09 2009

Because a few of my peeps have expressed some frustration re: my lack of availability these days (how sweet that they miss me!), I thought I’d use my blog to share two of the five things that have had me pretty much out of pocket, but still very much on the grid:

1) A book. It’ll be available for purchase online soon and at an upcoming networking event being hosted by the PSAMA on Nov 19, 2009. It’s entitled, “I’m at a Networking Event–Now What???” and here’s the cover: NowWhatBookCover

2) A blog for G2B Ventures. I’m the official editor and even named it.  It’s called G2B Matters. Give it a quick read if you’re at all interested in Environmental Intelligence for Better Business.

I hope you’ll let me know what you think about both! Thanks, peeps.

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Now What?

28 08 2009

Today I had my first conference call with Liz the project manager assigned to help me give birth to my upcoming book titled I’m at a Networking Event–Now What????? She easily convinced me that setting a goal to have the book completed and ready for distribution before December 1st was the way to go. I agreed mainly because of all the networking events that occur during the holidays and the gift giving potential of a book that helps people achieve their new years resolutions (i.e., Find a new or get a job!). Game on!

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You too can drive success with books

9 04 2009

MOST book authors are pay it forward (PIF) type people. Their generosity is usually pretty apparent in the amount of intellectual capital they give away in their books.  And, the majority of publishers will tell you that you don’t make serious money from selling books. Instead, authors hope to make money from the business, contacts, speaking engagements or consulting gigs they get from being viewed as an expert on whatever it is they wrote about.

Well, Mitchell Levy, a publisher I became acquainted with last year (thanks to Jason Alba), recently published his own compliation book about driving success with books.  He also assembled a bevy of PIF types to donate even more intellectual capital to accompany the purchase of his book.  You can read more about his promotion here, and yes, #21 was a no-brainer for me to contribute.  I’m always happy to create some good social capital with generous people like Mitchell & Jason!

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