Last week I was in Charlotte, NC, doing some presentations for ProNet, which is a great resource for professionals in transition. I met some amazing people, but I wanted to showcase two of them:
Anne Marie Young (on Twitter), who had a significant role in organizing this event, is the consumate connector. She treated well from the first time we were on the phone, and I found her to be kind and proactive. At one point during the conversation I was talking about Power Connectors (a phrase I learned about in Never Eat Alone), and I immediately thought about Anne Marie.
I asked if anyone in the room (about 200 people) knew Anne Marie and it seemed like all hands went up! In the chatter that followed it was clear that Anne Marie was more resourceful, more helpful, more giving, and more thoughtful than I could have imagined. She is a powerful networker in Charlotte, but definitely not presumptuous.
She’s the kind of networker I want to be, and I feel fortunate to have met her and learned from her (thanks Anne Marie!).
The other person I want to write about is Orlando Cruz-Solano. Orlando worked tirelessly, along with the other volunteers, to make the all-day event for job seekers look like it was a breeze. It was so well-orchastrated that I didn’t sense any stress from anyone (well, except me, the speaker :p). At every turn Orlando was there to make sure I was well, and he helped me with some last minute needs (printing, food), and was extremely hospitable. It’s amazing to work with someone with is technical ability (civil engineer, database guru, large software systems salesperson, etc.) and get treated like I’m the king of the world. Orlando was awesome!
Another amazing person I spent some time with is Rich Saucer, a volunteer at the Church of Charlotte job seeker group. Rich hosted Thursday night’s event and I was fortunate enough to have dinner with him after the event. Interestingly, we have a lot in common. I’m always amazed to meet people like Rich, who is happily employed but spends quite a bit of time volunteering to help people who are unemployed.
Of course there were other awesome people there, including, Dan Shawbel (the other Tuesday speaker), and others (here are the people who tweated about it: Traci Cuthbertson, Mark Frietch, Linda Hargrove, Andrew Goerke, Rochelle Rivas, Mark Weber, Tom Becker, Candice Szeliga, Alison Warren, Charlene Berry, Michelle Walker… I sincerely appreciated all the ProNet volunteers who worked behind the scenes…
Thanks to all for a fantastic North Carolina experience!