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Proactive eNetworking

May 17th, 2007

Let everyone know what's up (credit:http://leadershipunleashed.typepad.com)Have you ever received an e-mail newsletter from one of your friends or professional contacts? This is the kind that say something like “here’s all the stuff going on in my life” and mixes professional with personal information? I wrote about this in February and have since seen two more examples that I wanted to pass along.

Has it made you mad to receive it (in other words, have you felt it was spam)? I actually love getting these (usually) monthly updates.

Thanks to Mike Schaffner, the February You Get It winner of the month (!!), who recently become the CIO of a huge company in Houston (congrats on the successful transition Mike!!) I found two very cool newsletters. He got the idea from his buddy Gerry Fusco and I wanted to share them with you since they are so cool. This one is the “holiday season” letter:

Dear Friends:

I hope this message finds everyone in good health and having a great year. I have not sent out a communique since December, so I thought a current update would be timely.

Activity in the Job Search arena seems to remain strong, both for recruiters who I have worked with here in Houston as well as those throughout the U.S. and with the Senior Managers’ group I co-lead at the Between Jobs Ministry here in Houston. Landings appear to be on the rise, too, from my view, and I am also seeing greater opportunities for myself of late. I will continue to work with many of you, sharing my contacts with you for positions you are trying to fill or to just pass along top-level candidates whom might be beneficial for you to know. To my “non-job search friends”, I wanted to include you in this communication as you have all helped me in some way.

I did want to provide you with an update of my own search and my recent election to several C-level business development & problem-solving organizations. Many of you are aware that, besides the Between jobs Ministry leadership, I have also taken on the Membership Chair responsibilities as a Board member of the local Section of the Society of Plastics Engineers. Growing membership, through the development of new marketing approaches, is a primary challenge of this position. Since my last broadcast, I have also been asked to join:

Vistage — the World’s largest CEO Membership Group, focusing on business and organizational problem-solving and new business development

The Executive Council — a Houston-based group of diverse business owners sharing similar values, trying to grow their market share

C-Suite — an In-Transition & Alumni C-level networking group, in which I have played an integral role in defining this organization’s Mission & Focus

I am also a member of the Houston Strategic Forum.

As most of you know, I am interested in a VP/ Director level Operations or Supply Chain position in a Manufacturing organization. I have had a number of senior level opportunities in Engineering and Technical Service in manufacturing businesses and 2-VP Operations positions in service-based industries, but these are not of interest. I have also been contacted by 3 retained search firms in the past 45 days on specific assignments that were/are potentially good fits. Finally, I have been preliminarily contacted on 2 different, 1-year turn-around assignments; one in California and one in Shanghai. I am interested in these if the responsibilities are diverse & challenging. We will see if these opportunities develop any further.

Recruiters, continue to feel free to contact me if you have client needs where my network may be of value to you and please continue to include me in your “candidates to contact” if a manufacturing company is looking to improve its earnings, customer relationships, supply chain effectiveness, process efficiencies or trying to develop a more effective operating organization of leaders.

To the Rest of My Friends, thanks for your continued help and support.

Continued Success,

Gerry Fusco

This is longer and more detailed than the February example. Lots of things to like here, and some room for improvement (perhaps more contact info in his signature?). Here’s some things I like:

  • He knows he is sending this to different types of people (job seekers, execs, employed folks, recruiters) and addresses them with specific content
  • He let’s ME know what he’s up to
  • You know how they say “quantify results on your resume?” This newsletter is great because it has specific titles, comapanies organizations and an “I am interested in… ” statement. There’s no question how I can help him and – here’s the best part – he makes it easy for me! Instead of an open ended “help me” it has specifics that might jog my memory.
  • His letter is warm. I can tell he is a networker and lives the “giver’s gain” stuff. I want to help him because (a) I know he is helping others, and (b) if I ever need him to help me he’ll be there.

I’m obviously a big fan of these newsletters. I have one :) (if you’d like to get it shoot me your e-mail). If you have one please add me to your list.

So, what do you think about Gerry’s e-mail? Any negative comments on the style or idea? Any success stories using a similar strategy?

3 Comments »

3 responses to “Proactive eNetworking”

  1. Jason –
    Good post and good networking. This is one of the strategies I recommend to my clients when they’re looking for a job – and when they’re not. This “update” is a tool that can help people manage their career, long after they landed. One of my clients uses this strategy – and has for years now. The updates not only helped him keep in touch, BUT helped him land his next few gigs as well.

  2. Brandon says:

    Jason:

    I have been a bit reluctant to use this strategy, but I think its because the examples I have seen aren’t useful. I get the family newsletters about vacations to the Grand Canyon (better than watching slides I guess). I like what I have seen from the examples you have provided and will be drafting my own very soon.

  3. […] 2. When you say “worked all of my contacts,” I’m trying to understand what that means. Do you have a weekly or monthly e-mail (like a newsletter) that you send to your contacts to keep them apprised of your situation and progress? I found that a lot of people didn’t seem helpful but it was either because (a) they didn’t know how to react to me, an unemployed guy, asking for help, or (b) it was out-of-sight-out-of-mind. Just letting them know that you are still fighting to find a job, and letting them know about what you are looking for, may prompt them to think a little harder. […]