Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Evolving Networker

NetworkingBack some years ago, I took the Certified Networker training course. It had a lot of great ideas and systems to help make business/social networking more effective. One of the concepts it tried to drill home was that when you join a group, whether it's the local Chamber of Commerce, BNI, or the Royal Fraternity of Weasel Trainers, it takes time and effort to make that association pay off -- usually on the order of six months to two years.

Good thing I have patience.

Those who've been following my exploits for a while know that I've been participating in the Ann Arbor Chamber of Commerce for about a year and a half now. Today I was acting as an Ambassador (read greeter and volunteer host) at the Morning Edition networking breakfast. I'd done this many times before, but today seemed different. In the past I could act confident. I would do my best to point people in the right direction and occasionally be able to connect two people.

Today, for some reason, I was confident.

It was like every time I spoke with someone, a little voice inside my head would tell me "Introduce them to Bob", "They need to talk with Carol", or "It sounds like they would really benefit from Leadership Ann Arbor." I actually felt like I had something that I could give to my fellow attendees beyond directions to the buffet table.

Why, I might even be a Networker!

So, in what groups are you a Networker?

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