Networking – Networking – Networking!
I don’t think there is a person working that hasn’t had to network at some point in their life. Networking is such a part of business that often times it becomes a huge portion of our job whether we realize it or not. It can also be one of the most stressful things for people to do so here are some tips for building a network or at least making your network opportunities work for you when you have them.
- Make a goal list of the people or type of people you want to meet at the networking event. Believe it or not it helps you stay focused and it makes it easier to ask people to introduce you to a certain person or type of person if you know what you are looking for in advance.
- Your appearance matters! Make sure you look professional and for goodness sake ditch the gum or spit out your mint before talking to someone.
- It might seem silly but put your nametag on the right side. This actually puts your name in sight line when you shake hands with someone.
- Its okay to observe the room before engaging in conversation. Some people like to talk to those people they know first but be careful you don’t get caught up and never move outside your comfort zone. *perhaps wait to talk with those you know until after you have met the people you came to meet first.
- It’s time to be BOLD – introduce yourself and tell them you have been looking forward to meeting them. This is NOT when you go into an elevator speech about your business. It’s now time to listen and ask open ended questions like, “What brought you here this evening?
- Always ask the people you are meeting how you can best help them. Perhaps you can work together or perhaps you know someone they should meet or maybe you can refer them to a resource they need. If you are truly listening to them you should be able to come up with your own idea on how you can assist them.
- If you are being introduced to someone – always stand. It is a sign of respect. If you are making the introduction remember hierarchy. People of lesser importance get introduced to people of greater authority. For example, “Mr./Ms. Greater Authority, I would like to introduce Mr./Ms. Lesser Authority.” Also, don’t forget to include a connector – like you both love exotic cars.
- Names are very important. If you are meeting someone new, repeat the person’s name at least three times in your conversation so it sticks with you. If it is a difficult name, ask for the spelling and if you are saying it correctly. Don’t be afraid to admit you have forgotten their name and ask to be reminded.
- DON’T hand out your business cards like you a professional dealer in Vegas. Have them accessible but only give them out if you are asked for your card.
- Breaking into an existing conversation can be difficult. Pay attention to the ongoing conversation and break in when there is a lull in conversation then introduce yourself.
- Breaking away can be difficult sometimes too so just simply say it was nice to meet them and promise to follow up with them within a few days. *If you make this promise – note it in your calendar before moving on to your next conversation and whatever else you do – don’t forget to reach out like you promised.
- Its a good idea to limit alcohol consumption at networking events as anxiety can make the drinks affect you like you’ve had multiple.
- Practice juggling a glass, a plate and anything else you may have in your hands at a networking event before you go. Remember to keep you right open for shaking hands.
- Before you leave take a minute to thank the host of the networking event for setting it up and providing the opportunity for you to meet new people. It’s just good etiquette.
- Last but not least – send thank you notes to everyone you connected with for taking time to meet you and reiterate your offer of assistance in helping them. Don’t forget to send thank you notes to people who referred you or helped introduce you to others as well. Let them know they helped you out and offer to do the same if they should ever need it.
Networking is about meeting people and connecting people. Smile, laugh, be personable and remember that they are probably just as nervous and anxious as you are. You can do this!
There aren’t many people who don’t have some form of stress in their lives. Unfortunately stress has become a common part of the LIFE experience. People expect to experience stress and sometimes they subconsciously make choices that create more stress in their lives. Its a horrible pattern that people have a hard time breaking. Its one of the reasons that stress management has become such a huge priority in people’s lives.
Work is one of the biggest stressors. There is a lot of pressure on people to perform at their best and they do more, causing more stress to do better, achieve more and the cycle continues. Since this is the start of the year, it is a great idea to figure out some ways to have less stress in your life. Think of it as a New Year’s Resolution!
Here are some tips to get your started:
- Focus on your breathing – keeping it calm and even
- Visualize a calm relaxing place
- Smile! (Yes it really does help)
- Compose a mantra or an affirmation
- Go Decaffeinated
- Use essential oils
- Just say NO (Yes you can do this!)
- Try acupressure
- High Carbohydrate snacks give you a release of endorphins
- Boost your vitamin intake
- Get a massage
- Day dream
- Listen to music
- Goof off
Fall is when there is a lot of fundraising taking place. Its a time to gather in stores and prepare for the upcoming winter. Its a time when many focus on taking care of those in need. Those that are most likely to suffer the most from the long winter. This also happens to be one of the busiest times of year for our company. Well, at least, now to New Years but even in that our thoughts turn to how we can support our communities through fundraising. As an event company, our skill set is of course, planning events.
So many people think that they must hire us to gain our expertise or our skills but in truth, we are a fabulous resource for associations and businesses that want to fundraise or do events to support non-profits. We are connected to hundreds of resources, vendors and venues. We are willing to advise and even donate hours to non-profits we support but sometimes all a person needs is an idea of how to fundraise so we have a few starting ideas for you:
• Super Event – find lots of event hosts to hold a small fundraising event on behalf of your charity on the same night, and all around the same theme.
• Theme Nights – Pick a theme that works with your charity’s goals and build your event around that.
• Social Media Events – host an event through social media and request donations through PayPal links.
• Combined Events – find another non-profit or organization that matches yours and host a combined event to raise funds for you both.
• Eat for a Cause – work together with local restaurants to donate 10% of their profits on a designated night for your cause in exchange for encouraging supporters to eat there.
And of course….we can’t forget ways to spread good cheer throughout the upcoming holidays and our favorite is Paying It Forward. Do something nice for others, not because anything is expected of you but because it feels good to give. If you need some ideas for how to Pay It Forward:
• Help someone with the groceries
• Pay for the coffee of the person behind you in line
• Donate items to halfway houses or abused women’s shelters
• Spend some time writing positive reviews for businesses
• Donate blood
• Volunteer at a hospital, homeless shelter, nursing home, etc.
• Drop extra change into parking meters
• Donate food to the hungry
• Instead of having people give you birthday and holiday gifts, ask them to donate gifts or money to a good cause.
• Donate time at an animal shelter
• Buy a coffee card and give it to a police officer
Everyone has the ability to reach out and help another – if we think we ourselves need assistance. Find the way which is yours and embrace it. You will be happier for it.
We are in the middle of a heat wave, here in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. I know most people believe we are the rainiest place on earth but in reality we have beautiful weather here. Yes, there is rain, lots of it at times and there can be a perpetual overcast that gives off a kind of dreary feeling but for those who call this region home, we know to get out and make full use of the beautiful days when we have them.
The thing is, not everyone is prepared for these hot days and nights. You can generally tell because there will be a run on fans and air conditioners. However, there are other ways to beat the heat in the hotness of summer. Here are a few tricks we’ve unearthed to help keep you cool:
• Hang a damp sheet in front of an open window. The incoming breezes will be cooled by the evaporating water. (Unfortunately – this may have to be repeated often depending on how fast the sheet dries in the sun)
• Purchase curtains that have sun blocking white backs. Believe me – they work!
• Place a bowl of ice in front of a sweeping fan. As the ice melts the fan will blow the cooler air into the room.
• Keep windows and doors shut, even though it is tempting to create a breeze, its deceiving, the open windows and doors only let the hot air in to make the inside warmer.
• Keep a spray bottle of water in the refrigerator and mist yourself when you need to cool down.
• Turn electronics off during the heat. On they are an extra source of heat you don’t need.
• Wear thin, light weight, light colored, loose clothing
• If you like it spicy – now is the time to eat up! Hot spices used in ethnic foods make you sweat which in turns cools the body down.
• Drink lots of WATER, and fruit smoothies. Avoid drinks like alcohol and caffeine because they actually dehydrate you and that is a big no-no in the heat.
• Keep your meals light too – avoid those fatty, heavy rich foods because it is harder for your body to digest in the heat.
• Avoid using your stove- no one needs the extra heat generated from a cooking stove or stove top. It’s all about grilling this time of year.
• Take advantage of air conditioned businesses. Go see a movie in the evening or enjoy a meal at a restaurant.
• Find a swimming hole or at the very least take advantage of the local community swimming pools.
• Place or tie an icepack behind your head.
• Run cold water over your wrists for 10 seconds on each hand. This will reduce your temperature for roughly an hour.
• Soak your feet in a bucket of cold water.
• Stock your freezer with flavored ice treats.
Regardless of what you options you take to stay cool we hope you find a way to enjoy the sunshine without being miserable due to the heat.
Whether your single and ready to mingle, single and loving it or in a committed relationship (and all those relationship points in between) we all know February is the month of “love”. Usually all February gives us to look forward to is Valentine’s Day but since this year is a Leap Year we have a whole extra day at the end of the month! Now while that may not be exciting here, in Ireland Leap Day is a very romantic day. It’s the day that a woman can propose to a man without it being considered odd. Now I know gender roles are archaic but it’s a very old tradition dating back to the 5th century! Since this year’s February is so special we decided to come up with a few fun party ideas for your Valentine’s Day or possibly your Leap Year engagement party?
Try the DIY craze by making these crazy cute decorations! http://thehappyhousie.porch.com/adorably-elegant-diy-valentines-day-decor-ideas/
Making truffles at home means customizable flavors! Bailey’s anyone? http://vikalinka.com/2013/12/15/baileys-truffles/
Crafty type? Make something cute for that special someone. http://www.bombshellbling.com/75-amazing-valentines-day-ideas/
With all these do it yourself gifts and decorations, your February can be a lot more cost effective and a little more heartfelt. Handmade objects really add some love into whatever you’ve created and honestly, you don’t even have to be good at arts and crafts! These are especially good if you have a few kiddos around that need something to put their energy into. Half the fun of parties is the planning and set up! Between Valentine’s Day and Leap Day, may your February be packed with parties and fun!
As we enter the new year, we all begin our resolutions. Gyms fill up, the health food stores are selling like crazy, people are trying to drink less alcohol and more water. Most resolutions in the States revolve around losing weight (at least from our personal experiences) but I’m sure plenty of people want to step out of their shell, explore more, try new things and maybe even travel to new places! Resolutions are great because they give you a goal, but so often they fall to the wayside as January ends. Since we noticed this, we thought we would make a handy list to help people keep their resolutions all the way through to 2017.
• Keep it realistic. Striving for unrealistic goals will do nothing but upset you.
• Have a buddy help you. Gym buddy, travel buddy, eat new food buddy, everything is better with a friend!
• Take time to focus on what you really want and need. Don’t confuse your wants and needs for your family’s or friend group’s or society’s
• Have fun with it! Make 2016 (and 2017, 2018, etc) YOUR year. Go to Italy on that second honeymoon, go skydiving, eat that sea urchin. There is no time to live besides the present so get out there!
This year, develop your tastes, broaden your horizons, and definitely visualize and achieve your goals. This is the year to spend more time with your friends and family, be grateful for what you have, and work harder for what you want. With this in mind, we here at PremierEC hope everyone has a fantastic 2016 and you all accomplish everything you desire.
Kaizen: Japanese philosophy that literally means (to change/to become good)
It is the philosophy that every aspect of our life deserves to be constantly improved. I think most people would agree that there are areas in your life that need to have some improvement but this concept takes things to a whole new level. This is choosing to live life as in a slow but gradual pursuit of changing for the better. This is about never accepting the status quo but looking for the often subtle shifts that can bring continual improvement.
In a work environment key elements to the Kaizen philosophy are:
• Quality of product
• Effort through personal discipline
• Involvement of the whole group
• Willingness to change
In a personal environment key elements to the Kaizen philosophy are:
• Quality of life
• Personal discipline
• Action toward change
• Elimination of waste/wastefulness
• Orderliness, Tidiness & Cleanliness
Kaizen is both an action plan and a philosophy. It is a way to live life and to view life. Businesses are adopting this method of change to complement their large projects and even more people are adopting this concept as a way of life. It is truly something to ponder and perhaps even adopt as you move forward with your own personal goals.
We believe that music is a major component to every event but it’s never more so than when summer hits and it’s time to get out and play in the sun. In order to help you create a summer playlist for all your fun summer activities we have searched the web and found some great playlists for you to start with, tweak and then make your own:
And just because we want to add a few suggestions of our own:
• Lovely Day – Bill Withers
• Summertime – Will Smith
• Summer Girls – LFO
• Cruel Summer – Bananarama
• Hot in here – Nelly
• Blurred line – Robin Thicke
• Summer – Calvin Harris
• Happy – Pharrell
• California Soul – Marlena Shaw
• California Girl – Katy Perry
• Live Your Life – Yuna
• Icarus – Madeon
• Summer Time – DJ Jazzy Jeff & Fresh Prince
• Margaritaville – Jimmy Buffett
• Bonita Applebum – A Tribe Called Quest
• Summer in the City – The Lovin’ Spoonful
• Cruel Summer – Bananarama
• Hindou – El Guincho
• The Wave – Miike Snow
• Let’s Go – Calvin Harris
• The Night Out – Martin Solveig
• Regulate – Warren G
• Hot In Herre – Nelly