Just in the last week, our cohort has had the opportunity to participate in three networking events. People’s feelings on networking vary from enthusiasm to dread, usually with the thought that it is a necessary evil. However, over this last week we have gotten out of our comfort zones, met many influential and charismatic business leaders, had passionate conversations about topics we are invested in, and made meaningful connections. We have had our attitudes changed through these events because we have realized networking is about building relationships.
The SPU MAM-SSM program hosted the annual alumni and community partners mixer at Ivar’s Salmon house. As students, we were honored to hold conversations with guests such as Scott Cummins of Next Manga, Tom Everill of Northwest Center, and Todd Dunnington of Skills Inc, just to name a few. We also talked to MAM-SSM alumni about their current roles at work and the critical skills we are learning that enabled them to be in meaningful careers with impact.
The second event we attended was the Golden Hearts Luncheon, hosted by the Northwest Center and attended by over 600 guests. Thanks to the graciousness of Tom Everill, we were invited to attend a pre-luncheon VIP mixer and to sit at the table he hosted. Randy Lewis, former CEO of Walgreens, was the main speaker, and inspired guests to “open the door a little wider,” to include people of all abilities into the workplace.
The last event was a networking panel with Kyle Kumasaka, program manager at Daves Associates, Jenny Capella, author and business advisor, and Jeff Rogers, CEO of One Accord. The panel discussed openly about best practices when it comes to networking, from their own experiences and directed towards us as young professionals. They recommended being intentional with our connections, following through with our contacts, and building relationships with the attitude of serving. Their most valuable suggestion was to look for creative ways we can add value to lives of others, both in business and in their personal lives.
Until next time,