Thank you for subscribing to the SSWBN Newsletter. Our mission is to provide you with Contacts, Coaching, Collaboration, Community.
From the Executive Director
Dear Members and Colleagues:
Have you met our new Board of Directors yet? The names should be familiar, as these are people who have participated in and given much to the Network.
This amazing group of new leaders, along with the current group of Board members who are still serving out their three-year terms, is very excited about focusing on the Network's mission of providing our members with Contacts, Coaching, Collaboration and Community. In June, at our annual Celebration! we welcomed our new leadership.
New members starting their terms include:
They join current Board members:
Thank you to our volunteer Board of Directors for leading SSWBN into a successful future!
781-696-9901 * email@example.com
Dedicated to the success of our members through Contacts, Coaching and Collaboration - our mission.
Message from the President
|Stacy Doherty |
Four and a half years ago I attended my first SSWBN breakfast, which then took place at the Rockland Holiday Inn. I very vividly remember a few key players: Janet LaBerge greeted me, as this was BM (Before Michelle ... Lathrop), and ironically I sat next to Terri Martini, who had just opened her shop down in Scituate Harbor. I remember being captivated by the then President and her fabulous red boots: you guessed it, the trend-setting Stacey Shipman. Katie seemed like someone I just wanted to know and to be around, and the group gave off such great energy -- which is not always easy for 7:30am!
I was still trying to develop my business from ideas and suggestions into tangible dollars and invoices. I went to that breakfast lacking any previous formal networking experience, and I left knowing that this was a group that felt like Home. The women participating in the meeting gave me the impression that if I listened very closely, they could teach me a lot.
I excitedly filled out my application with the multiple intentions of connecting, finding a support group, and learning how to best grow my business. The first thing I did after my check cleared was to get involved. I joined a Roundtable, where I was lucky enough to spend time learning about business owners Megan Stewart, Loraine Fields, Mary Noone, Kat Ogar, Gwen Morgan, Bev Rivkind, Lisa Flashenburg, Jen Mitchell, Courtney Newcomb and a few other visitors here and there. Our core group met once a month, and in that intimate setting I learned about goal setting, about what accountability really means, and how to be supportive and to seek support.
If you need help getting more connected, please do not hesitate to contact me, another Board Member, Katie or Michelle. We are all more than happy to help you get connected!
About the Law
So, Aaron Hernandez was arrested, the Bruins lost their bid for the Stanley Cup, there are wildfires in the West, and Edward Snowden still languishes in a Moscow airport ...
... but, the BIGGEST and MOST GAME-CHANGING news came when the Supreme Court made a momentous, life-changing decision for all of us.
They overturned the Defense of Marriage Act.
The changes may affect individuals on a personal level, and for those of us who own businesses and have employees, the changes could very well affect us. Some of the specific changes that this means for same-sex couples includes:
- People who were married legally in some states are recognized as married throughout the nation;
- Benefit options became available for Federal workers and servicemen and servicewomen;
- A partner can call a hospital and check out condition of his or her spouse;
- Tax returns will get amended;
- Estate planning and divorce planning will change (this actually applies to all married couples);
- Claims from accidents, worker's compensation and social security benefits change; and
- Alimony needs to be discussed.
There are so many "what ifs" in this decision, that I cannot list all of them. So if you have questions, personal to your situation or otherwise, I and my colleagues at Gordon, Mond & Ott, P.C. would love to help you sort through it all.
Please note that IT DOES NOT MATTER whether you believe in gay marriage or not. THIS IS NOW THE LAW. Call us to discuss your rights and needs.
Gordon, Mond & Ott
From the Editor
For as little as $50 ...
Why Sponsor an
Seven years ago, when I started formalizing my marketing plan for LaserLight, the first target audience that I looked for was a women's business group about which I had written a news story a dozen years earlier, when I was making a living as a writer and the group was just starting.
The search engines of course brought me to the South Shore Business Women's Network website, where I saw the surprisingly large membership number. I said to myself, "With 300 women in the organization, there must be at least 50 with hair on their faces." Thus by joining, I believed that I had launched a lucrative beginning to my laser hair removal business.
Not so, Grasshopper, I heard whispering in the air around me, as I watched my telephone not ring every day.
At my first meeting, a breakfast, a member in some aspect of the food business said to me, "It takes two years for them to get to trust you enough to do steady business with you. I have been a member for two and a half years, and my business is just now taking off." I don't remember who that person was, and I do not know if she is even still a member; but I comforted myself that if I stayed with my membership for a couple of years, the SSWBN membership would form a substantial cascade in my revenue stream.
Not so, Grasshopper, I heard whispering in the air around me, as I heard my telephone ringing more and more every day -- but with many fewer from SSWBN than I had expected.
Are you wishing that more members would support your business? Are you looking at some of the members who consistently get thanked in the newsletter Connections column every month, or at our many events, and wish you had their success? Do they just have better businesses than you? Do they have a more sought-after product or service?
Do you feel like you know them better than others in the Network? Have you thought about why? What came first: the grasshopper or the larva?
If you really examine it, the members who seem to be most successful in business put themselves in front of the group far more often. They sponsor events, seek out the three-minute speaker slots, and spend hours trying to shrink their marketing message into fewer than 10 minutes in order to woo you as a customer.
And they can do it without breaking the bank: in this Network, you can speak about your business for three minutes in front of a lunch or breakfast group for free. You can sponsor a breakfast or lunch, which gives you the opportunity to put your direct marketing materials in front of each participant, to peruse as they eat their meal, and you get to talk to them for a full ten minutes about your business, for only $200! If your budget is squeezed, why not spend just $50 for the privilege of personally greeting every attendee as s/he comes in for a breakfast or lunch?
Some of the Network's sponsorships relate thematically to something with which you might like to identify. For example, how about sponsoring a Tee or Green at the annual golf outing, for $125? How about the annual Professional Development Day or the Celebration! event for $1200 for increasing your visibility and credibility?
Do you prefer to write? Our monthly newsletter provides opportunities between $50 and $150, and your message lives out there on the web indefinitely -- and it improves your SEO!
Remember: people do business with people they know, like and trust. The first step is to know. What better way to grab the attention of 40 to 100 people than to get them to listen to your story while they have nothing else to do but eat a meal or watch one of their foursome sink a putt?
So to test my recommendation that you, too, may join the ranks of the successful businesses, go up to a few people whom you see as successful, and ask them if they ever presented themselves and their businesses through a sponsorship. If they answer yes, you might want to pick their brains for the strategies they used that worked ... or didn't work.
Then hurry to reserve your event sponsorship before all the other readers of this article beat you to it. I hear Katie is booking events out through the fall already. You might start hearing, Good work, Grasshopper.
For guidance in choosing the best sponsorship opportunity for your business and budget, contact Executive Director Katie Howard at 781-696-9901, or Email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also research Sponsor Information on the SSWBN website.
Just my thoughts,
Patricia Funder, Managing Editor
LaserLight for Men and Women
Thank yous and Acknowledgements
"If anyone deserves thanks and acknowledgement in this column, it is Kristen Ford-Hernandez of Enterprise Marketing," said Patty Funder, SSWBN Newsletter managing editor and owner of LaserLight for Men and Women. "Kristen has given hours of her time every month to produce the Connections column, always providing the hyperlinks to members' businesses as they thank one another for the connections, collaborations, and contacts they have made.
"For more than five years (May 2008), Kristen has served as my right hand and left foot in gathering information to make this column exciting and meaningful, often taking extra steps to ensure that each member gets the maximum internet benefit, such as SEO, from simply thanking one another. The next time you see her, please acknowledge her, as I do now, and wish her well as she moves onward and upward to developing her own company."
Patty also thanks Lynn Feingold, Songs of Colonial Days, for agreeing to take over the Connections column, after having provided the Above and Beyond column for the past year. "Her writing is superb, and it makes my job so much easier!"
Patty added, "And the next time you see me, please let me know if you will consider taking over Above and Beyond for Lynn!"
Beth Brainard, author of popular children's book, Soup Should Be Seen, Not Heard!, thanks Heather Jackson of Action J Marketing "for being a tremendous source for information about social media from set-up to strategy. In one session Heather solved so many issues for my business. She is prompt, speaks non-techy for those of us who need it, and is a savvy strategist," said Beth. "If social media is tying up your day, Heather can help you!"
Paula Greally of NHance Revolutionary Wood Renewal said that Raquel Mullaney from Comfort Keepers "deserves much thanks from me. I first met Raquel in January 2012, and we hit it off immediately. She very quickly extended the offer of help to me and she has been an amazing mentor. She is always available to me and is so generous with her time and advice. She has been my sounding board many times and has helped boost my confidence and keeps me believing in my chosen path. I am very grateful to have her in my corner!"
Remember to keep your connections coming! Be generous with your gratitude! Send them to Lynn Feingold, at email@example.com.
Freedom consists not in doing what we like,
but in having the right to do what we ought.
Pope John Paul II
|Above and Beyond|
|Lynn Feingold |
The weather has been typical New England weather - cool and rainy one day, then a blasting heat furnace the next! But whatever the weather, we can always count on our SSWBN members to make steady progress on their goals and achievements, some of which I am delighted to share with you in this column every month.
First, let's have a big round of applause for a number of achievements reached by motivational speaker and author Stacey Shipman! Stacey recently participated in the Toastmasters International Speech contest where she placed First in the Area (four clubs) and Third in the Division (six speakers, 24 -- 30 clubs) with her speech entitled "The Quietest Girl." She also had her first article published in The Boston Globe South earlier this spring: "Weymouth Points to a Healthier Way." Her second article in The Boston Globe, "The Season for Picnics South of Boston," was published June 20. To top it all off, check out her exciting new website!
We just can't keep our members out of the newspapers -- I mean that in a good way! The Patriot Ledger recently featured Gretchen Gold's Wish List Consignment store. Check out the great article at this link: Scituate Resident Fills her Consignment Shop at Hanover Mall -- and of course do stop by her shop for a unique vintage item.
Congratulations to Yvonne Bridges, not only for her return to the fold (SSWBN), but as well for her new role and accomplishments at Enhance Integrated Wellness, the former Norwell Spine and Sports. Yvonne has played a key role in renaming and rebranding the multi-approach wellness organization. "We have expanded our chiropractic services to also include personal training, muscular therapy, nutritional counseling and nutritional supplements," said Yvonne.
Congratulations to local designer, Elizabeth Beach Hackingof ShelfGenie, a company that designs, builds and installs customized Glide-OutŪ shelving systems. ShelfGenie recently named Elizabeth Designer of the Year at the company's 2013 national convention in Orlando, Florida. The company reserves this award for the Designer with the highest annual sales volume and quality customer service. Elizabeth said, "Serving in a role that can help so many people has been a tremendous experience. I am passionate about serving my community and helping our customers. I'm honored to have been recognized for what I love to do."
Kudos to Lauren Cloutier of Cloutier Photography for making a big move to a new studio in Hingham Square. I hope you had a chance to go to her studio for the fantastic open house at the end of June.
In a personal note, I'm honored to have been elected President of the Folk Song Society of Greater Boston, a 300-member, 50-year-old nonprofit organization of people interested in folk music, its traditional origins and sources, and its current expressions. I bring to this role more than 25 years of performance experience as an a capella singer of traditional English, Irish and Scottish songs and ballads, as well as more than 30 years of board service, community volunteering and organizing. I have used the social media skills I learned at SSWBN Professional Development Days to leverage FSSGB's Facebook presence to pitch their concerts and programs to a younger audience.
Editor's Note: we also congratulate and thank Lynn for her service in writing this column for the past year, and for now accepting a new assignment, to produce the Connections column every month. Her writing is superb, and it makes my job so much easier!
Summer is a great time to sip a cool beverage by the water - and make a list of your professional goals. Onward and upward, everyone!
Cheryl Bagangan, Inn on Onset Bay
Cheryl and Aby Bagangan, owners of the Inn on Onset Bay
I recommend to everyone in this organization to attend as many events as possible, which I have done since joining the Network in October of 2012. I try to meet at least one or two new members at each event.
Since donating a weekend at the Inn, the exposure has been more than I could have imagined! At the same time, I am fulfilling a goal that I am passionate about: helping women to take time for themselves for self-care. This happened when the SSWBN chose the Inn as the venue for the first SSWBN Serenity by the Sea Retreat!
For members, make a commitment to attend as may events as possible: you never know how you might be helped, or how you may help another in their business. Reach out to Katie, Michelle or the Board if you need assistance in the beginning, as they are all supportive, AWESOME resources!
For non-members, if I compared my ROR (rate of return) to other networking groups, this is by far the best value!!
I am so grateful that I met Katie at an event this past fall! The warm welcome from her and all of the members was really the thing that made me join! It has been great to find a group where I know that the more I put in to it, I will only get more than I could imagine in return.
Inn on Onset Bay
serves as your Managing Editor of the SSWBN Compass.
E-newsletter designed by
Jeanne Pagnozzi, CPA
Business name: Blum, Shapiro and Company, P.C.
Your title/role: Supervisor of Accounting and Auditing
Batterymarch Park, 1 Pine Hill Drive, Suite 301, Quincy, MA 02169-7431
Professional and Mother: Example of Success
for Two Daughters
What are the top three things that separate you from your competition?
BlumShapiro is the largest regional accounting, tax and business consulting firm based in New England with offices in Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut. This allows us to deliver the expertise you would expect from a national firm, with the service you desire from a local office. For our clients, this means:
- Each of our clients is treated like our most important client. Deep involvement of partners, managers and tax department professionals ensure our clients receive the best service possible.
- Our industry professionals are dedicated to having the knowledge and expertise needed to best serve our clients, with the goal of helping their businesses reach their full potential.
- We also love what we do. We are not only committed to having the best industry-specific knowledge and technical expertise in our area, but also we are active members of the communities in which we work, live and do business.
Describe your dream/ perfect/best customer.
A perfect client is one who understands the value of the services that we provide and has a strong internal financial management structure. Whether or not our clients are required by regulation or contract to engage such services, our goal is to work with clients to understand their business and provide much more than just a financial statement or tax return. Many of our clients have been with us for years and trust us a business advisor and strategic partner.
What changes are happening, or can you predict happening soon, within your industry?
There are constant changes in the world of accounting and tax, which makes it necessary to remain current with both industry and technical updates. The IRS and the federal and state governments are continually making changes to tax laws, and we work with our clients to understand and implement these changes. Accounting and auditing standards undergo changes on a regular basis as well, such as the continual process of convergence with international accounting standards. Every organization is unique and working with our clients to plan for change is one of the areas where we can provide the greatest value.
Where do you want you and your business to be in five years?
As BlumShapiro continues to grow and increase its client base in Massachusetts, I look forward to furthering my work with sophisticated organizations across various industries. I enjoy the diversity and constantly changing nature of the work. I see tremendous opportunity for the firm and for me personally, over the next five years.
What benefit(s) have you received through your networking efforts?
Networking is one of the most important business development activities that individuals can do in my profession. Personal relationships continue to drive business decisions in this industry so it is crucial to get out and meet as many people as possible.
What motivates you on a day-to-day basis?
What motivates me day-to-day is being an example of success in all that I do for my two daughters (ages 13 and 15). As a female professional and a mother, something that is on my mind is how I can impart motivation, leadership and independence to my daughters, helping them to be dynamic, thoughtful and independent women in whatever they choose to do in life, whether it be personal or professional.
What do you do in your spare time for fun? I love to cook, travel, sample wines, hike and bike and just spend time with my family on local day trips or in our own backyard.