What Do You Bring To The Party?

I do not know how to fix my car.  I do not know how to cut my own hair (or anyone else’s for that matter).  There are lots of things I do not know how to do and still more things that I KNOW how to do but don’t make the time to do it or someone that does “it” more than I do may be better and more efficient doing it for me!

It’s All In Your Head

I have been changing up the way I am networking lately.  The endless travel challenges that winter brings makes keeping appointments challenging to say the least.  I am using Social Media, email mining and other things to reconnect with old contacts and friends too.  Lots of these conversations have nothing to do with “HEY BUY MY STUFF!”  That isn’t my style and I resent it when people do that to me !

“Soul” Food

There is nothing more fulfilling for me than talking to an old friend that helps me put things into perspective.  In this case it was an old friend that I have not actually talked to for several years.  Not for any particular reason, but we just went in different directions.  He is now in Virginia and I am in Maine.  He and I will always be able to pick up from where we left off just like it was yesterday.  In our conversation we talked about simpler times in our lives.  He also reminded me of some things I happen to be good at that I take for granted.  I guess I have not changed much since then and the list he gave me hasn’t changed from 1981!

The Go-To 

Yes, I am a “Go-To” person. Because I like people and find everyone interesting,, I attract a lot of people.  He was making fun of some of the “Tom Foolery” I may have on my Facebook wall.  I describe my wall as “The Wild Wild West”  unless it is hurtful or cruel,  what is posted stays there.  It may not be my opinion but it was put there by someone I know and I don’t mind that people see it.  People contact me in all different ways for all different things, many things I know nothing about.  But it is possible that I know someone that knows about it and I can get people together that can help one another.

Social Media

I use Social Media every day. Many days BEFORE I EVEN GET OUT OF BED IN THE MORNING! (TMI, right) ? Some mornings depending on the project, I may be looking at notifications on my phone before my feet hit the floor. It is what I do!  It really is my way of life.  It isn’t everybody’s.  When people ask me about “computer things” I want to say, “I know nothing about that stuff.” But when it is a “social media computer thing, I may know A LOT about that and be able to help.

So what can you bring to the party?


Throw Your Hat Into the Ring

If you are a business owner, fine tuning is always helpful.  It is easy to get stuck into the grind of it all.  I know that I often get so immersed in the day to day of operating, making sure my software is updated, returning calls, networking, etc.  I oftentimes get so wrapped up, I fail to think about my company as an outsider.  Where I want it to go and what my part is in moving it in that direction.

Brain Space
When I am in “tactical mode,” helping customers with their business processes,  I have difficulties thinking big picture on ideas for my company.  And being in innovation and looking for “that special” thing for someone else, there is never a shortage of new technology to try out or learn about.  That part of my brain is always RED HOT, it is easy because I am in it all the time.  I am no neuroscientist but I would venture to guess that my PLANNING part of my brain is different than my tactical part (and I am not even going to bother googling it.)

As a Marketer at heart, (been at it in one way or another for 30 odd years – yikes!).  I love planning.  Planning allows for contemplation of what has happened (or what we did), what we think is going to happen and what we plan to make the best of it.  It also is the place in the company that gets everyone together to decide “What” and “Who” we are as a company and “What we WANT to be?”  Those things don’t happen in Accounting, Sales or HR they happen in Marketing.

Thinking Differently

Think DifferentI am fortunate that I teach Social Media as well as Marketing at Husson University at the New England School of Communications.  I say that I am fortunate because for about 30 weeks a year I get to teach courses on things that Marketing people need to be doing at their companies.  Sure I may have to pick up the mail and make a bank deposit, follow up on Sales calls or client requests, but I am constantly reminded of what needs to happen in Marketing.  That I need to stay connected to that world, to the media in person, on air or through social media.  There are a host of other things that I am reminded to do, because I teach these courses and the feedback from the students is priceless and very helpful to me.

It is possible there may be a way that you may be able to do some work that puts “Planning” on your calendar. Maybe Junior Achievement, Adult Ed, Brownies or Cub Scouts- anything that makes you prepare a presentation of some type that gets you from thinking about your day to day and more into your “Day After Tomorrow.”

*thank you Creative Commons and Apple for the use of their image.


What Do You Think About Facebook Posts?

Is there a Facebook YOU and a Real YOU?

There is a woman that I know from a networking group that always tells me how much she loves my Facebook posts. Almost every day that she gets on Facebook, she looks me up to see what funny thing I have to share.  Well it took me back a little.  Here is a professional woman whom I admire immensely, bothers to approach me and tell me what I post starts her day off to a good start.  Stunned.

And for me too, there are those people that I look up to see what kind of snarky, playful fun can be going on because my day isn’t necessarily going the way I wished it was.  As I have written several times in this blog, Facebook is a great escape for people at one point or another during their week.

The Old Fashioned Way

A few years ago I wrote a post about people taking what they see on Facebook at face….VALUE.  And it seems that the same people that use the excuse that they “thought” they knew your life was okay because of what you post on Facebook are probably the same people that wouldn’t call you to find out anyway.  But that is another post for another day.


I have some people that I know in real life, like the ones I see in person often, talk on the phone thumbsupdownto often and they seem like happy normal people.  People that I drink coffee with, have over to my house.  Remember THOSE kinds of people?  Well on a particular day when I was looking for a lift and went to Facebook for my daily dose of fun, I went to one of my friends pages and it was some negative thing about some corporation, I looked again and there was something else until finally after searching for a while, there was something that had nothing to do with the government or something ELSE we have no control over.  I know this person.  I know what a positive loving person they are!  Yet to look at their page, you would think, “Why am I friends with this person?  Which one is real?”

What about the First Amendment?

Now before you get all rabid on me, you are right.  This is an individual’s page and in the spirit of free speech, that page can say whatever they want it to, right?  But I have a dilemma – do I “unfriend” the person because the politics and rampages are just driving me crazy OR do I tell I am going to do it first? And on a philosophical note,  which is my real friend?  The person that I hang out with, laugh and cry with or the person that spews anger through their Wall?

With a little help from our friends…

You need to be living under a rock if you haven’t figured out that times are tough. Perhaps you personally or your business may not have had financial challenges, but I bet there is someone in your life or a business around you may know that has. (Congratulations by the way!)

So the time is NOW to get creative in how you are thinking.

Some people are particularly good at networking.  Most of these people don’t actually consider it as the LABEL “NETWORKING” because they live, breathe and do it every day, all day.  AND they like to hang out with people that feel the same way. (Don’t we all?)  A few years ago, I met a lady named Sheri,  a mortgage loan officer from Maine Savings Bank,  recently, she started a Sushi Lunch Group that “meets” on Fridays at a local Japanese Restaurant – Ichibans, here in Bangor.  The purpose of the group is simple. Connect and help each other.  No bylaws, no dues, everybody pays their own bill.

Photo credit: pingmag.com
Photo credit: pingmag.com

AND it has not only accomplished people getting together regularly and sharing, for me, I have met new people I would never have otherwise gotten to know.  The usual Chamber Business After Hours events, just don’t seem to do that for me anymore.  AND being new to Japanese food, these folks are always more than happy to share with me some of what they have on their plate, so I can try new things easily – also great fun for everybody!

One day as Sheri and I were leaving the restaurant, “Ruai,” one of the owners came up to her and said, “Thank you Sheri for your business and always bringing people in that are new to Sushi.”  (She was looking at me.)

Sheri said, “You are always so nice to us and always bend over backwards – the food is great.  See? We help each other.”  (Big Smiles all around!)

It is also no secret that the restaurant industry has taken it very hard during these times. Seeing Ichiban full of customers and NEW sushi fans is great.  But when people are making choices in where to go to eat, they may not try something different, because they don’t want to feel disappointed,  going out that one time per week (or month).

Thinking “out of the box,” during “out of the box” times is necessary these days.  Regrouping and doing things simply, can be very effective.  You never know, while you are helping yourself,  you maybe helping your friends and neighbors too!! (YAY!)