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Mission: Promote purposeful passionate people to help them reach professional and personal potential while enjoying life to the fullest. DISCLAIMER: This is a PERSONAL blog. Views expressed are my own. Names listed have given permission.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Suit Up!! Free event Aug 24 2011

Shopping for work clothes for some
can be h
eaven...for others, hell.

Me? I live somewhere in between.

I won't lie and say I don't like this game of dress-up - big guys look better in suits (husky, as my dad used to kindly say)

But, I'm picky and hate shopping for what I like.
Most of all, working in non-profit,
for and with the poor at times
I personally find expensive clothes sickening

But! This is a uniform for work,
it shows respect to my peers and those I serve
it gives me confidence to be bold and effective

So, we have to do it...but..
Why can't we like it?
Why can't it be done on a budget?
To quote another well dressed man... YES...We.. CAN!

I've organized a FREE event on August 24, 2011
At the awesome new "Network Orange" space in Toronto
RSVP via LinkedIn or Twitter

Yes of course, we'll do a little networking before and after
but we'll gather to listen to two experts:

I was a Tip Top man, following my father's footsteps my whole life
A co
uple bad customer service and suits in my early working left left me wanting
Then I heard of T

Every man at my non-profit office shopped there so I went to check it out.
He personally put me in th
e best suit of my life, at the lowest price of my life
I never looked back.

Once a year, I hit one of his s
One purchase, three suits for LESS than I used to pay for one suit. Harry Rosen is his buddy, Now Magazine once said..."Tom Mihalik and his team have an eye for classic tailoring and bespoke quality, guaranteeing that while your purchase may be inexpensive, it never looks cheap." - They gave me tips on how to tailor and wear suits that as a co-worker once said to me "makes you f
eel like a champ". One of Tom's team will be with us...

After asking around it was of course my business networking author/guru Alison Graham, author of "Business Cards to Business Relationships" who connected me wi
th someone who can help the ladies in my network. Erin Nadler is the President of Better Styled, a one-on-one by appointment shopping experience catering to the time starved women seven days a week. Erin has been featured on Canada AM, CHCH, Flare Magazine, Chatalaine, The Sun and Women's Post to name a few.

Lastly, as an added bonus to my network
I have been
nagging several folks to get new LinkedIn pictures 
So! For five buck
s (all of which will go to charity) a professional photographer Ahmed Nizam ( who once took a picture for the super cool TimeRaiser event, which I use as my main social media shot ) will take yours!!

A ton of value
A great evening
I have only 40 spots.

RSVP today, hope to see you there.



The event is B.Y.O.N. - Bring your own nametag  
Yes I'm cheap, (work tags encouraged )
BUT! There will be two prizes for most creative

A prize for best tweet using #SuitUpToronto

Over $200 in prizes (all donated by my network)

At 8ish, we'll be moving the event to the brand new
Joey's Toronto for libation / sustenance 

See you tomorrow!
Bring cards. Be ready.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

NEVER cold call - The Informational Interview

Someone remarked to my wife the other day
"Paul's good at networking eh? I need some help with cold calling".
They meant calling someone up to ask for a job.


Why not instead of asking for a date
- make a booty-call instead?

A cold call is like russian roulette.

Sure you'll win now and then,
but it only takes one loss to die.

Read my lips. NEVER cold call.

These are my secrets. In sharing them I hope they can help you and will also cause me to raise my game!

THE CONCEPT, "networking meeting" or "informational interview"
NOT held for the express purpose of this in
dividual hiring you.
In fact if you ask them to refer you,
give them resumes and ask them to pass it on
or ask them if they're hiring you will b
urn that contact.

You are gaining a connection that will help you find the job opportunity, who will tell the decision maker about you and who will send you job opportunities.
In fact, I often share with peers that the worst time to do this type of networking is when you're looking for a job.

Find the person who has the job you want and learn for the future.
These are the cri
tical questions you should be asking:
- What should I be doing for the next three to five years to
be you?
- What does success look like in this sector? To you?

- How did you find your way to this industry and job?
- How have you developed into the leader you are today?

- Who should I be talking to in order to learn about being the best in this p

Remember you are on the schedule of the person you're trying
to meet with. Scope out locations ( coffee shops, restaurants ) near their office to meet.

If you are trying to stand out or be memorable try and find an alternative place they might not have tried before. Museums and public attractions have beautiful coffee houses that many who work in the area have never visited.

Never be late. Get to the loc
ation early and find the perfect table. I often speak to the staff and let them know I'm having a meeting and that if a fight to pay ensues that I must be the winner. There are so many things you cannot control, manage the things you can.

PREPARE FOR THE MEETING. Do your homework.

earch the company of the person you are meeting with, research the person ( alma mater etc ), research your meeting topic ( industry, job climate etc.. ). Networking is about being fascinating and fascinated, read up on the location, the date, social and political news.

Whatever this person is expecting, be someone different.


I have mentioned before that pulling your resume at a meeting lik
e this is like accidentally touching hands when you're walking with someone you don't know. It's awkward. Don't do it.
Please refer my most popular blog post ever for a tool
that you can use to discuss your key skills, accomplishments and how exactly to connect you forward. Take notes. Remember to be fearless to make promises but take enough notes to keep them if you asked for the meeting.


ember those promises made I mentioned? The less time between the meeting and the time you send articles, LinkedIn connection requests etc.. the most you impress this contact. It means if they refer you that you can be trusted to follow up in a timely professional fashion. Make no mistake, it's a test.

How about a curve-ball here. The internet has killed civility.
Bring it back by sending a hand-written note card of thanks for time, help and insight. My secret tip is to have the card ready, stamped and addressed to send as soon as the meeting is over. Will help you make sure you complete it when you get back to the busy office.

Why aren't you having more of these meetings?

It's not a cold call if you've kept in touch.
Make every call, a warm call.

Make sure you build your career by using meetings like this to learn about your industry, next steps in your career and to benefit your network!

I have three a week face to face. Minimum
7:30am at the 'Bucks or lunch if it's a must

I truly hope this has been of help,
please feel free to send me comments and questions.


Monday, August 8, 2011

Sunnyside Beach Art Show, Sale & Sponsorship

I was born in Toronto
I deeply love this city and it never fails to delight and amaze me
I am fascinated by art and the conversations it creates
both internal and external

Much of my network loves Toronto too
Many of them are Dragonboaters who practice at Sunnyside
Others love art and need an excuse to get down to the lake...

Too many don't know about this amazing art event each September

Take a gander

Sure you have to get there but I'm writing to my business network to ask you to consider sponsoring an event that supports not just art but engagement in our beloved city.

I've crunched the numbers, affordable sponsorship rates,
good location, good traffic, three days of visibility
great media coverage
and because it's a
sale, you reach a quality target market.

I have the direct hook-up to the contacts and rates
or you can contact them yourself.

Either way, please share:

Video: http://youtu.be/CMaPA-XnZTM

Site: http://www.a

Tweet away! @sunnyside_art

Angelika and Ania, what a great job you do of spreading the word...

Long live Toronto, love life and public art

See you there, Paul

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Heroes in our Midst

A recent post by a leader in my sector
Kimberley MacKenzie who manages a non-profit
highlighted the superheros in her team
I loved it, and it stuck in my head...

I just returned today from watching

Captain America - I'm a long time comic book fan so it was fun.
But it got me t
hinking about two people
one I know, another I read about today in the Globe
should be referred to as Captain India & Captain Kenya

Captain Kenya, along with his countrymen are world class athletes but they work day jobs to make ends Linkmeet and they have left behind families that they love

Captain India is a peer of mine,
an experienced banker

Who came h
ere to try and make a better life
for his family
but they are not here,
and he works so hard out of love for them

his love, often mov
es to me to prayers, and tears

These men, work, do their best
they don't party, go to cottages, bbq's or golf
they work and sleep with singular focus

Today in Canada is a holiday.
I spent this day with my w
ife and son
who I love almost with desperation

I spent much of the day thinking about these two Captains
their courage and l
I admire and respect them so much

Like so many superhero's with great power
they cannot help the ones they love
but this is real life and we
can help

I'll fight until I die for my contact
I hope someone steps up and help the Kenyans

you have a hero like this in your life
Let me know, we should help them togethe
We should be their Captain Canada!

(*Apologies to my female readers for the sexist post

I know their wives work just as hard in harder conditions
to care for the children
back in their home countries.
I value and respect them too. But I only know the dudes.

I hope to meet those families soon. )