Networking Nuggets from Client Connections
Helping You Connect With Confidence                     September 2010
Kath the Connector
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For many people, especially those of us in America, September is associated with new beginnings even more strongly than New Year's Day is.  Whether it's because summer is ending or kids are going back to school or some combination of the two, everyone seems to be energized and ready for "what's next".  I hope that using these Nuggets will propel you into your next business success.
September's Top Tips
 purple triskele 
1. Forward e-mails judiciously!  For one thing, not eveyone on your list of networking contacts may appreciate receiving that "just wanted to share this with you" e-mail.  For another, previous recipients of that forwarded e-mail will certainly not appreciate having their contact information visible to all subsequent recipients!  It's very easy to avoid this mondo faux pas:  When you forward a truly valuable message, delete names and e-mail addresses of all previous recipients before hitting "send".  This not only respects others' privacy, but also makes it easy for recipients of your e-mail to get to the meat of the message quickly, rather than scrolling past lines and lines of e-mail addresseses.  It's good karma all the way around.
2.  When networking in America, say "no" to glossy business cards!  In American business, it's considered an acceptable practice to take notes on the back of someone's business card, so why would you want to make it almost impossible for someone to do so?  Instead, make your card distinctive either by using a heavy-weight (e.g., 100-pound) paper or by using a lighter weight paper with a heavily textured surface.  Either one will make your card stand out without making it difficult to write on.
3.  Resist the temptation to wear your Bluetooth (TM) wireless headset into a live networking event.  When you're "plugged in" like that, you run the risk of giving the impression that you're less concerned about connecting with your conversational partner than about taking a phone call that might come in. 
How's This for Success? 
Lodestone Dynamics' logoIt pays to always focus on providing huge value to your networking connections, regardless of whether you make those connections online or face to face.
Michele Bergh, principal of Lodestone Dynamics, contacted me with a great compliment and also a request.  She told me that Networking Nuggets was "probably the best newsletter I've ever seen", and she asked if I could help her refine the focus of and the market for her own newsletter. 
This request came barely a week after I'd developed a new, power-problem-solving and brainstorming service I call Under The Microscope.  I told Michele that we could fine-tune her approach, probably in less than an hour, so we set a date to tackle her questions.
The result?  Within the first five minutes of our meeting, my outsider's perspective clarified an issue she'd been struggling with for weeks, and she walked away with a 7-step action plan to implement.  For my part, I successfully launched a brand-new service, added to my bottom line, and got to feel like a hero.
(By the way, if you're wondering why I'm tooting my own horn, it's because my birthday is later this month, and I'm tooting as an early present to myself.  Happy Birthday to me, Happy Birthday to me...)
Really Good Resources
 light bulb
 1. Associations Unlimited is a datasbase of -- go figure -- associations.  While this is available only on a subscription basis, chances are excellent you can find and use it free of charge at your local library.
2.  Whether you call it focus, goal setting, or acting on the belief that you can "ask and it is given," it's extremely powerful to get clear on what you want.  The Law of Attraction, by Michael Losier, is a small but mighty book that gives you step-by-step instructions on how to identify what you want and how to receive it when you get it.  Highly, highly recommended.
3.  We're in an economic recovery...No, we're not...Yes, we are... Yikes!  One of a businessperson's biggest challenges these days is refusing to buy into the general gloom and doom, despite real issues he or she may be facing.  A great help in that challenge is the book Learned Optimism, by Martin Seligman.  You can find it in bookstores or on Amazon.
Client Connections in Action
9/21/10, 7:30 a.m. (Ouch!):  speak at North Hennepin Area Chamber of Commerce, 221 - 1st Av. NE, Osseo, MN
10/27/10, 4:30 p.m.:  speak at Minnesota Women in Networking, OffiCenter, 7900 International Plaza, Bloomington, MN
Thanks to my friend Flickr.
Here are this month's heroes who graciously allowed me to use their images, posted in the Creative Commons area of Flickr, in this issue of Networking Nuggets:
purple triskele by shiftercat
light bulb by aloshbennett
With so many young people heading back to school, what might happen if you tapped your inner child's excitement at learning and applying something new?  I hope these Nuggets give you some great place to start your exploring. 
Wishing you a year of dazzling success,

Client Connections
Life is good.