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  • 15 Jul 2016 12:21 PM | Kate Scanlan

    Networking is a skill that many young professionals are often uncomfortable with.  How does one build a network where you can pick up the phone and accomplish a difficult task? How do you build a network with potential mentors that you can work with throughout your career?  How do you start to build a network at all?


    These are all valid questions with simple answers.  However, like anything worth having, you’ll have to work hard and be patient to cultivate a network that works for you.


    Here is the first in a series of three easy starting points:

    1. Find a hobby that speaks to a wide audience.  If you’re looking to cultivate a diverse network, spending all of your free time gaming online (for instance) is not going help foster many conversations with potential contacts who are not into gaming.  Also, those outside of your specific hobby world may not want to know anything additional about your awesome game score.

    Two approaches to finding a new hobby with the right fit:

    A)     Think about who you would like to connect with and your own interests.  If you want to meet more people who play tennis, sail, and go golfing, but you hate golf and get really bad tennis elbow, try sailing!


    B)      Find something that is universally understood (i.e. sports, the arts, etc.) that you are passionate about (or at least like). If you love to paint, that’s great! As the conversation starts to turn away from business at your next office event, ask your new connection what he/she enjoys doing outside of work, listen actively to the response, and then share that you love to paint. Most people will ask what you like to paint, how you got into this hobby, etc. The conversation goes from there.


    Regardless of the route you take, make a note in your phone of the person’s name and what you talked about.  If they offered you a card, write the conversation key points as bullet notes on the back and then add them into the notes section when you create a new contact. If you know you are going to see this person again, or need to reach out to them, but cannot remember the details, these brief notes will help you pick up where you left off.


    Does all of this mean that you have to give up your online gaming? No. It just means that you are branching out to make yourself well-rounded. You may have to try more than one hobby to find a great fit! But, by trying something new, you are also learning new skills and opening yourself up to change – which are both good things!


    Check back for tip #2 in two weeks!

    -K


    Kate Scanlan is the Coordinator for the Costa Leadership Institute and the 2016 Professional Development Chair for YP@TB. Kate enjoys supporting the community by taking an active role in the Junior League of the Emerald Coast and the Greater Fort Walton Beach Chamber of Commerce. When not at work, Kate enjoys gardening, cooking, yoga, and playing with her dog.

  • 05 Apr 2014 8:00 AM | Shaye Smith
    April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month & the Emerald Coast Children's Advocacy Center is the beneficiary the 13th Annual NWFTC Grand Prix Race 5k Run/Walk in Niceville!

    ECCAC is inviting all area Young Professionals to show their support of this cause and run or walk in the race on Saturday, April 5th! 

    CLICK HERE for the flyer/registration or visit the ECCAC Website for more info! 
  • 19 Jun 2012 10:26 PM | Shaye Smith
    On Friday, June 15, 2012, members of YP@TB visited Eglin Air Force Base where they were given a tour of the F-35 Training Facility, Operations Building, and of course got to see the F-35 up close and personal (except no touching -- classified information). 

    The first F-35 landed at Eglin Air Force Base carrying members of the 33rd Fighter Wing on July 14, 2011. Currently, Eglin houses six F-35s, but an expected 59 will be arriving over the next few years. 

    The Joint Strike Fighter is the country’s first fifth-generation, multi-role fighter equipped with the latest technology. Multiple configurations are being built to suit combat missions of three different branches of the American military as well as allies participating in the F-35 project. 

    Many locals don't realize that the nation's premiere strike fighter calls Northwest Florida it's home, but YP@TB members learned quickly of the reality that Eglin houses a jet that will ensure air dominance for the US for the next 30 years. 

    Not only did YP@TB members get to see the actual jet, they were taken behind the scenes to see where pilots get briefed pre-flight, schedules are made, training is executed and even had the pleasure of meeting a few of the F-35 crew members. Just learning about what it takes to prepare one pilot for one flight is exhausting... no one could imagine preparing many pilots at one time.

    At the end of the tour, everyone was amazed at the elite programs happening at Eglin Air Force Base. Although no one got to wear the pilot helmet or jump in the driver's seat, everyone was thankful to be educated on the premiere happenings that are basically in our back yard.

    Click HERE to see more pictures from the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Tour
  • 01 Jun 2011 2:16 AM | Deleted user

    Golf has always been a game used to mix business and pleasure. This year, young professionals can get a fresh introduction to the game and its benefits in regards to networking with the Summer Golf Corporate Challenge at Emerald Bay in Destin.

    Young Professionals at the Beach along with Walton County Chamber of Commerce is hosting a networking, summer corporate challenge. They have asked companies to put together a two man team. Teams can play at 4:30 p.m. every other Wednesday starting June 15 and lasting until the middle of August. Participants will have the opportunity to play nine-hole golf, meet other professionals, and get fed.

    It's $30 per man to play. There are chances to win prizes as there will be a draw every Monday by the Golf Director. The more you play, the more likely you are to win one of the top three prizes. First place receives two, three-night stays with Southern Resorts Vacation Rentals, two free rounds of Golf at Emerald Bay, a trophy and champs T-Shirts. Second place will receive two, two night-stays with Southern Resorts Vacation Rental and a trophy, and third place will receive a trophy.

    Richard Lamar, operation manager for Southern Vacation Rentals, is involved with YP at the Beach, and is looking forward to the upcoming event.

    "I think it's a great networking opportunity," he said. "We're offering a different avenue to engage those involved. It's a time to meet new people."

    Jamie McIntosh, president of YP at the Beach, says they host the event because, "it's a way for us to provide a venue for young professionals in the area to network and grow professionally.

    McIntosh, 30, says that they got the idea two years ago when they were looking for networking ideas.

    "We think it is a noninvasive way of meeting people," he said.

    Story Courtesy of Megan Mosley, Walton Sun

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