Networking

First of all, congratulations.  You are nearing the end of a journey that has consumed the better part of life as you have known it.  Since kindergarten the bulk of your life has revolved around academics and graduation is the closing of a chapter and the beginning of a new one.

It’s cause for celebration no doubt.  But before you get too wrapped up in graduation festivities, commencement addresses and heart-warming speeches about the future I want to share something with you.  I want to be honest with you.  These days, culture has a way of telling you what you want to hear and not necessarily being truthful.  Before you walk across that stage and take on the world, I want to warn you that everything on the outside isn’t always as “pretty” as you’ve been lead to believe. ...continue reading

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FATI know what you’re thinking and while it might not be the most politically correct title for a blog, I promise it’s STUFFED with value.  (Sorry couldn’t resist!)

F.A.T. is an acronym my football coach in college taught us that he used when recruiting new players.  I’ve found the acronym to be appropriate for many walks of life and absolutely relevant in the workplace.

Today, employers are lucky to find workers who will show up on time, let alone do their job, do it well and heaven forbid, go above and beyond. ...continue reading

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If you’re one of over a billion people on the planet that has a Facebook account and you own a business, chances are pretty good that you have a Facbeook page for your business.

If you have a Facebook page for your business, chances are also pretty good that you’re not getting the traffic, or the results, from your business Facebook page that you’d like.  You just created the page because, well…you’re suppose to right? ...continue reading

Several years ago, (I’m talking like 15) I sent a rather well known individual in my niche an email asking him for some information.  I didn’t specify what information, I merely found his email address online and asked if I could get some information from him.  To my continued disbelief, he actually responded and asked me what specific information I was looking for.  (I say continued because it still amazes me that he didn't just ignore my request altogether.)

I responded with my question and he graciously replied with his two cents on my situation and I learned a valuable lesson.  Of course I didn’t realize it then but looking back I realize it was foolish of me to have expected any sort of a response with how poorly my message came across.

In today’s electronically supercharged world, checking and responding to email is a chore, especially for busy professionals, managers and people in high demand.  Many people in leadership roles receive literally hundreds of emails per day.  That’s not me but there have definitely been moments in my career when the inbox was filling up faster than I could manage.

What I’ve learned in my professional experience is that when reaching out to people in high standing or influential positions it is imperative that you make your email count. ...continue reading

I don’t operate well when people order me around or tell me what to do.  As much as I’m a team player and I love being the go to guy that comes through when we need it most, there is a tactful and much more effective means of getting me to do something than telling me what, where and when I’m going to do something.

At one of my former jobs I was informed by a superior that I was going to spend my Saturday delivering a vehicle to a shop in a town about 6 hours away.  Because of my rather flexible place in life I typically don’t have weekend plans so doing it wasn’t the problem, being told I was going to give up my Saturday after a full week of work was what rubbed me the wrong way.  ...continue reading

Four years ago, almost to the day, I took the first steps on this crazy journey that has lead me to the very place I sit today.  Little did I know the excitement that would soon follow or the sweat, blood, tears, finances and emotion that would be expelled along the way,  but looking back now it’s amazing to see how God has worked all the pieces together to bring me to this place.

The single largest gathering of motorsport companies in the country was meeting in Indianapolis Indiana and I happened to be just a few hours away attending college.  I was no stranger to the Dealer Expo and had always longed for an opportunity to meet riders and rub elbows with some of the biggest names and companies in my industry.  This particular year, with the help of my father and one of his business contacts, I was able to score a pass to the three day event.  I didn’t know much about networking at the time but I knew if ever there was an opportunity to land a job in this industry, this was it. ...continue reading

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Just because you’re not getting paid doesn’t mean you’re working for free.  I cannot begin to tell you how many stories, articles, videos and favors I have done for free but in return have gained exposure, credibility or experience that money cannot buy.  What’s more, those rather menial tasks that I’ve done for free are the keys that have unlocked doors that are propelling me towards the very place that I want to be.

In his new book Quitter best selling author Jon Acuff talks about “The fountain of free” and his first opportunity to speak for the Dave Ramsey organization.  (If you haven’t heard of Dave Ramsey think Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity etc)  Jon was a budding author and speaker and he was torn as to whether he should ask for a small fee in exchange for his services. ...continue reading

So you scored an invite to a gathering of major players in your industry.  Later that evening you spy the president of XYZ company across the room and know you’ve got to talk to him before the night is out.  Kinda like that cute girl across the room that you never could work up the guts to go talk to, you start scheming up an excuse to start up a conversation.

Your luck improves and a while later someone introduces you to the man.   He follows the name exchange with the all too familiar “So, what do you do?

How will you respond? ...continue reading