EditorialsBy Matt Bud, Chairman, The FENG

As you may remember from the song of this same name, you can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave. I know they thought of it first and popularized it, but it is very much like your membership in The FENG. The only difference is you can check out, but I hope you won’t.

If you take a moment to look around the room at other job search related networking meetings and chat it up with the members of that group, one of our unique features will become a little more obvious. In The FENG members are expected to always be members.

Their involvement may change. Sometimes it becomes greater. Sometimes it becomes less. But, the security we are creating in being a part of this now vast organization is greatly increased to the degree we can get members to stay involved and participate even when they are “between searches.”

I realize that when you are working, the newsletters can pile up. Sometimes I don’t get to carefully read them every day, and I send them out. So, I understand. Still, in this world of terabyte hard drives, you can always save them for a rainy day, or as I used to joke, for those days when I wanted to “take a day off at the office.” You can catch up on a few editorials and notes from members that may be of interest, good news announcements and breeze through the job leads to give yourself a “sense of the market.”

Stopping the newsletter disconnects you from the pulse of our little society. Yes, I know you are busy, but the job market is a moving target. Your long term career goals require that you be informed and prepared. And what simpler way is there than reading the newsletter, calling a few new members and perhaps responding to a “Member in Need of Assistance” when you can help?

The truth is that the role of the Chief Financial Officer, which is our dominant area of expertise, is a lonely job. That is why at the beginning of your last search you may have found that your networking contacts were thin or non-existent. There are things about our lives and careers that only others in our profession can truly appreciate. One can never have enough friends or associates who welcome your calls.

During the time you are in need of professional assistance, I encourage you to drink deeply from our well. And, if I can make it easy for you, there is no need to “pay back” the specific individuals who help you. They will somehow know that the favor they gave you has been repaid many times over by the courtesies you have since extended to those who crossed your path from our august body.

Once sharing and caring get into your blood, it is a hard habit to break, and who would want to?

We welcome those who call us. We welcome new members to our meetings. We show concern and offer assistance to others who appear to need it. Why? Because that’s how we hope others will treat us. (Ah, that old golden rule, and not the one that goes: He who has the gold makes the rules.)

So welcome to the Hotel FENG. Stay a while; order up some room service; and try the free breakfast in the morning. (Dinner is also free.) But most of all make yourself at home.

This is your hotel and there is no reason to check out, let alone leave.

Regards, Matt

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