Wednesday, May 27, 2009

NOTES from last week's meeting, NEW NON-PROFIT OPP.

Great meeting last week. Thanks to those who attended for the feedback that was given to Chander. He sent me a note yesterday thanking the group for the opportunity to present his ideas and for the great insight.

As mentioned at the end of the meeting, we've been approached by another non-profit group.
I spoke with Pete Peterson yesterday, a friend of Ed Ferguson's, about an opportunity to help with marketing/web design to support Noteworthy, a non-profit group that works with the Evergreen Philharmonic Orchestra.

Their mission: "We support quality classical music instruction to enrich children’s lives, fostering a thriving music community in the Issaquah area."

Pete said the need is to help develop a web site that can be used to promote the organization and encourage donations to support a scholarship program. (I read it as 'replace' the Noteworthy site below with a simpler, less 'flashy' site that provides the facts, a downloadable brochure, and donation functionality.)

If anyone is interested in developing their interactive design/programming skills, their web production and acct/project management skills, please let me know - and we can set up a meeting with Pete for more info. (I may have him stop by this Friday to introduce himself.)
Ideally, we'd have at least one Project Manager and one Interactive Developer involved.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

AGENDA for May 22nd Meeting, @ SVC

Tomorrow's OCA meeting will feature guest speaker Chander Chawla. Chander will discuss his recent business venture into the world of "mobile social commerce."

As always, updates on the Seattle networking scene:
- breakfast w/ Aquent 5/28 (8-10:30am)
- HL2 'industry social' 5/28 (5-8pm)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

NOTES from Meeting #17, May 15th @SVC

Great meeting this past Friday. Below are notes.

WELCOME to two new members:
- Asako Yoshimura (Product Development / Marketing, most recently with Adobe)
- Julie Elting Wessel (Art Director with Interactive experience -

CRIS JANZEN visited the group, and we talked 'Interviews' - specifically how to read who you're talking to, so that you can communicate with them in a way that best works for their personality type.

Cris is a career coach and has extensive experience working with people to give them the tools to find the job that's right for them.
Her web site:
Her blog, which you can find linked to this one: I Love My Job

Cris led us through an exercise based on the DISC personality system. Then she walked us through the 4 personality profiles that we each could encounter and how to recognize them, from how people are dressed to the questions they are asking:

To the point, decisive and bottom line oriented. These people tend to be independent and results-driven. They are strong-willed people who enjoy challenges, taking action, and immediate results.

Recognized by: formal dress, direct questions

How to address: Be brief, direct, and to the point. Don't ramble. Eye contact is key.

Optimistic and outgoing. They tend to be highly social and out going. They prefer participating on teams, sharing thoughts, and entertaining and energizing others.

Recognized by: formal dress, but with a little flare. Underlying questions: "Will we get along? Will you fit in if we're working together?"

How to address: Connect with them on a personal level. Don't do all the talking.

Empathetic & Cooperative. These people tend to be team players and are supportive and helpful to others. They prefer being behind the scene, working in consistent and predictable ways. They are often good listeners and avoid change and conflict.

Recognized by: dress will fit in with the company's style. Underlying questions: "Are you one of us? Will you rock the boat?" Will absolutely check references and are concerned about longevity.

How to Address: Don't be aggressive or confrontational or come off as overly ambitious.

Concerned, Cautious & Correct. These people are often focused on details and quality. They plan ahead, constantly check for accuracy, and what to know "how" and "why".

Recognized by: credential checking. Underlying questions: "Do you have the education, the certifications to do the job?" Might ask you to 'white board' your approach to a problem.

How to Address: Prepare your case in advance (if possible). Delineate pro's and con's, and walk through the logical organization of information.

Less than 25% of us fall into any one category. Usually we're a combination, but we tend to lean in one direction. And they act on a continuum or axis:

Dominance / Influence - Likes control and change, acts 1st - thinks later
Conscientiousness / Steadiness - Likes to adapt, where someone else is in control. Thinks 1st - acts later.

Dominance / Conscientiousness - Task oriented, reserved/detached, questions 1st
Influence / Steadiness - Affiliators, concerned about relationships, accepts and reserves judgement.

For more information, has great information on the 4 types. (They call D 'drive' and C 'compliance', but it's all the same info.)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

A Brave New World

As I have continued to network with friends over the past couple weeks, it's becoming increasingly clear that we aren't just waiting for jobs to open up. Rather, people are creating their own opportunities: pitching business ideas to existing companies, launching their own endeavors, consulting on a contractual basis, and in some cases, working a combination of all three.

In addition, we're also starting to see a dramatic increase in the number of jobs and connections that are being made through freelance sites, such as Elance and Odesk. One glance at these sites, and it's clear that we're also dealing on a global scale - with people offering their services from the Ukraine to India (and at hourly rates much lower that what we're used to seeing.)

All that said, it looks as though the current economy has already shaped how we will do business going forward and how we have to approach the Job Search in a whole new way.

** For anyone who missed Arik's note to the OCA group a few days ago with the Wall Street Journal article about freelancing, here is the link. **

AGENDA for May 15th Meeting, @SVC

THIS WEEK, Cris Janzen - of Janzen & Associates - a professional career management firm, will join us to talk about Interviewing.
From her web site, "We don’t just help our clients find their next job. We guide our clients to define and reach their career goals, finding or creating work they will love."

Monday, May 11, 2009

NOTES from Meeting #16, May 8th @SVC

Smaller group this past week, but the great news is that 6 people had interviews Friday.

WELCOME to 2 new members:
- Marci Servizi (marketing / DM and customer expertise, most recently with Microsoft)
- Steve Muran (marketing / CRM expertise, most recently with WaMu)

- highlights from the past week.
- the most recent Seattle Direct Marketing Association's social media networking event (May 6th).
- our progress with the Centerstage / Knutzen Family Theatre project
- an opportunity to help the SVC.
- and our upcoming meeting's guest speaker, Cris Janzen.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

AGENDA for May 8th Meeting, @SVC

This week: Good ol' fashioned networking.
We've got several new people looking to attend, so let's learn more about each other and make connections.

Updates on:
- Centerstage Theatre project
- Upcoming guest speakers
- Need for a logo, OCA i.d.

Monday, May 4, 2009

NOTES from Meeting #15, May 1st @SVC

WELCOME to two new members:
- Alyson Burns (print production manager)

- Mhairi Voelsgen (account supervisor, marketing manager)

ERIC SMITH, from Aquent, gave a presenation on resume building.
- About Aquent:
* $500 Million global business, based out of Boston
* Organized around 4 categories: Interactive Design, Graphic Design, Online Marketing, and Traditional Marketing.

- Eric's resume steps:
1) brainstorm
2) organize
3) develop the 'story', and
4) refine - and refine - and refine again ...
* The 'story' is how you walk the reader through your resume, and there is a need to define the balance between information being too broad vs. being too focused.
* Create a contract between you and the reader: share info - to build trust - to get their time.
Information should be easy to follow and digest.
- Eric's recommended resume style:
1) name / contact info
2) skills / tools
4) employment history
5) education
6) case study (p. 2, if warranted)
No real need to provide your objective / summary statement - your objective is to get an interview.
Projects can highlight how you've put your skills/tools to work in situations, can show the clients/companies you've worked for, industries you've worked within, and promote results. They do not need to be chronological, so you can bring any relevant story to the forefront.
- Eric recommends using alternative media to add depth: having a blog or a web site, where you can highlight work and case studies, allows a hiring manager to dive deeper into your qualifications.