Being new in the Seattle area and now wanting to grow my business and get some exposure I was on the hunt for any situation to gain publicity for my business. I found a local networking group and though I had not been in the game for some time, I put my foot forward and went to the group meeting. It was at a local eatery, we have lots of good local owned places to eat in Seattle. There was only (8) or so of us there. I thought this is interesting and a good start for me.
I ask the local insurance agent, J.R. Gillespie for other groups I might join and interact with. He gave me one Called Tabors 100. The group met last Saturday.
Did I ever have second and third thoughts about going? Resounding yes! When I MapQuest the directions my daughter said to avoid Interstate (5) because of construction, only one lane is open. So what did I do? I open my phone and used maps there for an alternate route. The weather was awful, rain, cold, some sleet and to make things worse, there was construction downtown Seattle that was not available on my phone maps. I was totally lost. Do I turn around? No, you see I am the kind of person who has to look at the sun to know if I am going east, west, north or south. No sun that day. So what did I do, I remember my husband had insisted we put a direction indication in the rear view mirror. Thank you Ronnie.
So…no more thoughts of being late or turning around or maybe J.R. will not show up. I find the place and you guessed, no parking available. Almost everyone parks on the street in Seattle so I utilized my parallel parking skills and zipped into a space. Whew!
I grabbed my hat, my coat, briefcase and supplies. Off I went. I was greeted and after giving my contact information, not knowing what to expect, I walked into the room with about 75 people, I was so stunned to see this and when I saw the welcoming breakfast buffet I was totally surprised. This was not a continental breakfast but a full one with southern grits, eggs, bacon, hot links and all that goes with it. Yummy.
After making myself comfortable with my meal I scanned the room for J.R. No J.R in sight. No matter, I say, I feel great I want to see what this is all about, I want the details. The meeting was set to last 2 hours and there was an agenda. Nothing like I expected. After hearing several folks speak about what they had to offer members, I was intrigued. After about one and a quarter hour we all had a chance to go around the room and give our spiel.
I gave mine and did beautifully. Thank you Jeremiah Johnson coach from Denton, Texas. At some point in the morning I set up a small display on my table. During my short speech I invited others to stop by my table and see the small display. It was so interesting to see so many people interested in my purple water and wanted more information as soon as possible.
I felt so good about the group and the people I met there. My table mates were fantastic. I joined the group that morning. Oh yes! No regrets at all. I am excited about what I can offer the organization knowing I will be helped as a byproduct of helping others. I left the meeting feeling so good, being new to Seattle I no longer feel isolated, handicap by not knowing others and not knowing who to call upon for the support and help I will need. Just think about all the people I have yet to meet. How exciting.
The moral of this story is get out the house, meet people, join a group, extend yourself, help someone, make the effort. Who said, Fortune favors the bold. I was bold when I walked out of my home into that bad weather, I was bold when I put that small display on the table. I had not done that before. Doing new things will open the doors, you only have to walk through, your good fortune could be on the other side.