Sorry about taking some time off the running aspect of my blog. But hey – there are tons of running blogs out there. And without a job, we can’t afford the races and travelling that we all love doing. We *do* love travelling to huge races don’t we?
When I left off last week, I talked a little about getting networking in order – set some metrics and meet the right people. But, meeting the “right” people is only the first step in our journey. Most people who I was meeting at networking events were in the same boat as I was in. We were all unemployed trying to find a job or other opportunity. We need to drive networking to the next level. I’m sure there are a bunch of ways to do that, but here is what worked for me:
- At each networking event, when I found that person that I had something in common with, I got agreement to meet in one on one for coffee or lunch.
- Within a couple days of the event, I would contact each person and set up coffee or lunch to meet. The whole purpose of the meeting was to get to know each other better and figure out how we might be able to help each other. 30 minutes. Nothing else. No commitments. No promises.*
- We’d meet over coffee and just get to know each other better. Find out what we were doing individually to further our situations. Engage in some knowledge transfer.
- Then, important interchange #1: “You know, I attend <<insert name of networking group here>>’s meetings. I find that there is a good mix of employed people who attend who are willing to help. Let me email you the specifics. What about you?”
- And important interchange #2: “I have this contact who I’ve known for a while who might be able to help you. Let me give you his/her info.” I think you can now see where this is going.
The bottom line here is that, just like setting up a training plan, I set up a networking plan for myself. That plan currently looks like this:
- Attend 4 networking events a month.
- At each event, meet 1 to 3 people with similar backgrounds.
- Set up at least 3 coffee/lunch meetings per week lasting at least 30 minutes each
- From each lunch/coffee, get one networking group suggestion and two referrals for other people to meet.
And just like that, I started meeting with 12 people a month with similar backgrounds. Some were employed. Some weren’t. But – they all wanted to help!
Speaking of training, I’m going to make another attempt this week:
- Monday: Scheduled rest.
- Tuesday: 3 miles.
- Wednesday: 4 miles
- Thursday: 3 miles
- Friday: Scheduled rest
- Saturday: Scheduled rest
- Sunday: 8 to 10 miles
- Total mileage: 18-20 miles
It may not all be running, but it will all be moving!