Like the classic fable of the 6 blind men standing around the elephant, The FENG means a lot of different things to individual members.
In part it is dependent on where they are in their career, whether they are active in a search, or if they are currently employed. It can also vary on any given day.
Of course we provide support for one another. But, I like to think that the support we provide isn’t the “do it for you” kind, but rather it is our unique ability to be a resource for one another that makes the difference.
The FENG comes fully equipped with extraordinary resources for our members. And, other members provide them all. It is sort of like taking in each other’s laundry on turbo.
Let’s start with networking. Everyone has a few friends that could be useful to other members. Unlike Don Corelone in The Godfather, no one is asking to share your friends for bad purposes. Networking works best when all parties benefit. The FENG is one of those places where this can easily happen.
The Resume Review Committee is another place where it is hard to tell who is giving and who is getting. If you accept my theory that doing final editing on your own resume is akin to taking out your own appendix, then there is great value here. It is so hard to edit your own resume and so easy to see the flaws in someone else’s. The process of helping someone edit their resume can only improve your own writing skills. The additional plus here is that both parties get to make a new friend. (How can you not be a friend to someone whose background you have just learned?)
Our Chapter and SIG meetings present another opportunity to be a resource to others. In the past week I have had the chance to reach out to another member with a good networking source, only because another member had called me about him and I knew he knew his name.
Have you identified a specific company into which you would like to network? Duck soup! Out on our website we have a list of 40,000+ members. What do you think are the odds that there isn’t at least one, and most likely a “dirty dozen” who have worked there? Friends, it is near certainty! What a resource. And what do you think are the odds that those you contact will get back to you? Again, near certainty!
All dressed up with no place to go? We have a place on our website where you can check and see if there are any meetings you can get to. If it is too far to go by yourself, call a few other members and “con” them into going with you.
The support we provide one another is real. And, the resources we provide one another are also real. Please use them. That’s why they’re there.
(I know some of you are bashful, but you are just going to have to get over it!)