Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Women and Networking

When graduating from college and entering the working world I remember hearing the common phrase, “It’s who you know, not what you know.” At the time it just didn’t make sense to me because then what was the point in going to college and getting a good education if you’re going to have a tough time finding a job or being successful. Of course getting a good education is important, but I didn’t go to a school that emphasized networking and there wasn’t that loyalty you sense among alumni that “help” each other out after graduation.

The whole process of finding that first golden job being green to the professional world was challenging and definitely didn’t come easy. With hard work, determination and eventually learning the art of networking I was able to land my first job at a small advertising, marketing and design firm in the heart of downtown Seattle. It was one of the most profound and humbling experiences I’ve ever had. I went from being the daughter of a doctor and never really having to worry about money to living on $300 a month total spending money for food, clothes and entertainment……but I was on my own and doing it without my parent’s help. It was completely liberating and has taught me that you can live within your means and adjust your spending habits when you need to. Of course my salary grew over the years of working at the firm, but it was always tight and taught me a great deal in regards to money management that I’ve implemented in both my professional and personal life.

While working at this firm I was able to further explore how important networking is and how it relates to the growth of your business. Attending the right events and having memberships where you’re able to meet the right people was imperative to the success of your business. This is something that I have taken with me in all areas of my life and has been instrumental to the success of the three businesses I run from home while juggling two children.

I’m still awe struck in how powerful of tool networking can be. It’s amazing how when you are part of a group of people with a common goal and dream you can do amazing things. My hope is that this network of women inventors can become the driving force in showing the world how talented and creative women can be. With a strong network and a place to sell our inventions directly to the consumer there’s no limit to the amount of success we can all have.
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