Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Fridays at Five - June 5th

Can't wait for this week! We are going to be at Lavelle Winery in Elmira - rolling lawns, beautiful surroundings, fantastic hosts....They are staying open late just for us!

Fridays at Five has really turned out to be a phenom (if I do say so myself). I think the reason it works so well is because it's absolutely CASUAL. Perfect fit for small businesses who are intimidated by those huge networking events or by the costs of some of those referral groups or even by the time commitment that is required by some groups. Fridays at Five is just a fun group of business minded folks who enjoy a glass of wine or a beer at the end of a long work week and who, by the design of this program, wish to help other small business professionals grow, learn and succeed. We've called ourselves "A drinking club with a business problem" which cracks people up- but the truth is, we are a fantastic networking group that WORKS! When a business is chosen to speak we encourage that person to ask VERY SPECIFICALLY for whatever it is he or she wants. Example: I want to meet the purchasing manager at the new hospital". Inevitably someone in the group knows that person or can put them in touch with someone who does. Additionally, we don't necessarily offer our product or service up at first pass - as it is done so frequently at other networking events....How annoying is that? You are left with a handful of business cards that you toss, and still have e bunch in your pocket (your own) that no one really cared to ask for....So try this - At your next networking event make it a point to NOT talk about your business - ask about others then ask for more info ("tell me more" works well) then ask how you can help that person succeed or grow. Then watch what happens. Givers Gain!

I love that Fridays at Five is working so well. I am also excited that the spin off group - CEO Roundtable, has been well received. In fact, I'm off to facilitate a roundtable right now. Just thought I'd pop down a few thoughts on this lovely Oregon morning...

No comments: