Holiday Season Is No Time For A Networking Holiday!

Originally published to (Chicago Tribune) in Dec. 2011

For business owners, the holidays can be a great time to network and start connecting – or reconnecting – with people and set the stage for business in the coming year. Many companies, trade associations, Chambers of Commerce and other professional groups use the holiday party format as a way to bring people together in a less-than-businesslike environment, to eat, drink and exchange business cards.

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To Exclude or Not Exclude? That is the Question!

Originally contributed to TribLocal (Chicago Tribune) in 2011.

Networking is an important part of business development, especially for small and mid-sized business owners. In addition to creating connections and referrals and generating leads, networking exposes participants to people and information they would otherwise not experience. A networking event is an opportunity to hone one’s communication skills, elevator pitch and brand message. The troubled economy has brought more businesspeople into the networking community. There are all sorts of groups and events. It turns out that the question of which ones to join is not always yours to answer.

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