Webgrrls were ready to network and connect with members and guests on May 25th, keeping the momentum rolling from our launch in April. The crowd gathered early to start conversations that would run throughout the whole meeting. From the Webgrrls business announcements and news, to a member success story, to our discussion topic, to the facilitated networking, the interaction was non-stop and exciting. Diverse interests and diverse experience drove the lively and spirited conversation where project managers, marketing professionals, sales people, programmers, web developers, career women, entrepreneurs, consultants and independent contractors, brought expertise and an openness to share, and learn.
And the conversations continued into the night - literally. Although the meeting officially ended at 8:00PM, there were several women still networking in the parking lot at 9:00PM!
"The ability to have a sounding board for questions and concerns regarding my business. There were so many different professional backgrounds represented by the women in attendance. It is wonderful that we can come together to help each other. Great networking."
Leslie Maurer - Jewelry Artist
ON MY OWN - WITH LOTS OF SUPPORT!
After the successful launch last month, this month I was on my own to lead this meeting. It was an exciting night for me because I had the support of whole group and all the feedback from last month had given me a great deal of confidence. Thank you for welcoming me as the LI Chapter leader.
OUR SPONSOR AND TWO FREE CLASSES
It was with great pleasure that I had the opportunity to introduce and thank Nicole Pagoulatos, Director of Operations at ExecuTrain of Long Island, our sponsor for the evening and the “new home” of LI Webgrrls. After a few words about ExecuTrain of Long Island and the classes they offer, Nicole made an announcement that ExecuTrain is offering two free classes to anyone who has been laid-off in the past year and the “raffle of the night”, a free class, will go to one lucky attendee.
DOWN TO BUSINESS - LOTS OF GOOD NEWS
I was happy to make several Webgrrls announcements regarding the value of membership. I shared several incredible postings from the Webgrrls listserve mailing list including job openings, technical advice, and publicity. The community is wonderful. I was also excited to turn the floor over to member Ria Muriello, PMP, who shared her inspiring Webgrrls success story.
She explained that based on the NEEDS and WANTS that go out to the LI Webgrrls list, and her feedback quote that we included in last month's recap article, she was contacted by another member. Ria is actively looking for a job, and the contact she made lead to an interview the morning of our meeting. She was very encouraged about her chances.Webgrrls networking just doesn't get better than that!
This month's discussion topic was "How do you use LinkedIn?" and it turned out to be hotter than I expected. The opinions covered the whole spectrum, from not getting any benefit from LinkedIn to advice on how to use the specialized tools. It was obvious that LinkedIn, like most social media, can be used in a variety of ways, and that there is still a lot to learn on how to make the most of it for individual needs. The conversation lasted 25 minutes, instead of the originally scheduled 15 minutes, and the feedback I received later was that people would have talked, and listened, longer! Awesome - keep the feedback coming!
INTRODUCTIONS ALL AROUND
We got right to the “Heart and Soul” of the meeting…the introduction. We went around the room and each person took the opportunity to tell us “who they were, what they did, what they need, and what they offer”. We were all taking notes as we identified whom in the room we needed to connect with and when all was said and done, we broke into an informal networking session, had great conversations, exchanged business cards and enjoyed some refreshments.
AND THE WINNER IS:
Everyone was eager to win the ExecuTrain free class raffle! Nicole Pagoulatos did the honors and the night’s winner…and Shari Luftig was the lucky winner. Congratulations Laura!
Networking and conversation lasted well into the evening!
Thank you to all who attended for making this another wonderful meeting. If you couldn’t make it last month you missed networking with some great women and I am sorry that you missed it, but, we have another exciting meeting this month on June 22 where our discussion topic will be "Online Marketing Strategies". I really hope to see you there!
Long Island Webgrrls Chapter Leader