As I was scrolling through the newsletter the past few weeks, I couldn’t help but be struck by all of the chapter and special interest group meeting announcements. I just wonder if ALL of you out there in the land of The FENG are taking advantage of these great opportunities to meet really nice people (fellow members of The FENG) and to experience the warmth of the friendships that are part and parcel of being a member of our august body.
If you haven’t ever been to a meeting, I could try to make you feel guilty by telling you how hard your area chairs work to put on these events, but I haven’t found guilt to be as motivating a factor as making others aware of their own self-interest and how that fits with respect to attending our meetings.
Let me start you off with the idea that NO ONE has enough friends. I count all of you as my friends, and yet I am still trying to make even more. And, I don’t ever plan to stop. While we can certainly have telephone friends and email friends in The FENG, there is nothing like actually having shaken someone’s hand to properly begin a strong and enduring relationship.
For those who have never been to one of our meetings, I can assure you we don’t do anything silly like wear funny hats (with fangs, of course). The purpose of our little gatherings is to get to know each other and to be helpful to one another in whatever way we can.
I feel like Will Rogers when I paraphrase for political correctness that I never met a member I that didn’t like. By and large our profession is filled with individuals of high integrity who are hard working salt of the earth types. And since everyone in The FENG was sponsored by someone, extending the hand of friendship to others is just something we do. If there was ever a core value for The FENG, this is it.
There are so many benefits to coming to meetings of The FENG that I am only going to be able to mention a few more in the space I allot to my evening editorial.
Presenting your credentials to a friendly audience is one that I find as valuable as any. I know that all members have done significant things in their career. As I listen to 90-second announcements, I check what is being said to the resume that you have hopefully passed out at the beginning of the meeting. I want to be sure that the spoken message is as powerful as the written message. I think how I might “sell” the product that is you. Hopefully others at the meeting are thinking the same “happy” thoughts about how to help. We are often bashful or afraid of being boastful and tone down valuable approaches. As they say, if you’ve got it, flaunt it. And, only when you have given your “play” in front of a live audience can you tell what’s working and not working.
So, if you are one of those types who needs to be asked, I’m asking. I can’t force you to go, and I in no way make it a requirement that you attend these valuable sessions.
I just want you to be clear that you are missing out if you don’t join your fellow FENG’ers from time to time for some of the best networking known to mankind. (Or is it now peoplekind?)