The membership directory of The FENG is now over 3,500 pages. As I am sure many of you are aware, it is a document with many uses.
For example, if you print out a hard copy and tie it in a bundle it is formidable enough to use as a doorstop even in a public building. Its use in the home therefore, I guess, makes it “over qualified”.
It is actually a little more useful in electronic form. The purpose of our membership lists is actually to facilitate easy communication between you and other members of our august body.
All you need to do is open a directory in Word and use Edit, Find. Put in your University and see who comes up! Put in every firm at which you have worked and see who comes up! Put in every firm in your industry and see who comes up! Make a list of all of your old friends and see if any of them are members. (There is no end to the fun you can have with computers!)
Yes, I know that many of you are busy going to networking meetings. Listen, I am not going to diminish the value of meeting others face to face. You need to get out and about if you are going to conduct an effective job hunting campaign. As I have been heard to say, networking is a contact sport. And, searching the directory can be done at night!
Although networking through the membership directory and networking at face to face meetings are both important, there is a crucial difference between the two that may or may not be totally obvious.
Most networking meetings are attended by those seeking employment. Not that there is anything bad about that per se, but the percentage of those unemployed is very high.
On the other hand, networking with the membership directory, over 75% of those you might contact are working. Although too busy to get “out and about” they are in the world of work and have slightly more active networks. For example, they have vendors of all kinds with whom they have business relationships.
I am not suggesting you stay home and only work the phones. What I am suggesting is that for those in our membership who have not enjoyed the full benefit of our now vast organization ought to reconsider their approach.
In a word, there is gold in them thar hills. Working our electronic room can easily pay big dividends. Ask anyone who has tried it!
To make it as easy as possible, our membership directories come in different flavors. The full membership directory is absolutely huge, but has no substitute for finding old friends.
The directories that are the easiest to use are for Chapters and Special Interest Groups. They are smaller and more focused. If you have an area of expertise such as Internal Audit, or if you live in an area of the country where we don’t have a large chapter, there is the opportunity to get to know a lot of very important people with whom you will have a lot in common.
Our directories are newly revised. I would invite you to visit our website and give one of them a test drive. There is no charge if you are a member of The FENG.
(Have I appealed to your inner accountant or what.)