Apr 27

Useless

April 27 - PlaxcoUntil a few seconds ago, I was blissfully unaware that Henry Feintuch's birthday was a mere seven days away. Now, though, thanks to the fine folks at Plaxo Pulse, I'm not only forewarned, I'm forearmed. Phew! That was close.

Truth be told, I have no idea who Henry Feintuch is. I'd guess he's a member of the Feintuch clan. But, that's mere speculation on my part. He could be one of the Kentucky Feintuch's, the Iowa Feintuch's or, heaven forbid, the Dakota Feintuch's. I've heard some of the Dakota Feintuch boys ran into trouble a while back.

I wish Henry a very happy birthday in advance (and many more as well!). But, I have about as much use for this information as I do, say, for the price of tea in China (a dated expression that may be considered politically incorrect in today's PC world).

So, cutting to the image and reputation chase, what good is a service that has done absolutely nothing for me since I registered? Facebook is fun, since I can occasionally check out new pics of old friends. And Linked In is an absolutely essential new business and networking tool, or so our strategy consultant tells me (truth be told, though, my 300 or so Linked In connections really haven't done anything for me). But, Plaxo and its birthday greetings? Gimme a break.

Call me old school but, when it comes to business development and networking, I'm an F-to-F guy (that's face-to-face).

Henry, do have a happy, happy birthday. But understand that my feelings for Plaxo and its advance birthday warnings can be best summed up by the immortal last words of a mortally wounded John Wilkes Booth, who stared at his hands and sighed, 'Useless. Useless.'

Mar 18

The single best investment I’ve ever made

CounselorsBanner
Joining the PRSA Counselors Academy has turned out to be the single best business investment I’ve ever made. And, unlike my 401K and stock portfolio, it’s increased in value over time.

Attending the Counselors Academy Spring Conference is an investment in your business that you wouldn’t want to miss in a normal year and one you can’t afford to miss in a difficult year.

I’ve been a member for 15 years or so and was invited to join the executive committee four or five years ago. I can point to millions of dollars in revenue that’s come our way as a direct and indirect result of Counselors Academy introductions. I can also point to priceless friendships that I’ll have for the rest of my life as a result of the Academy.

If you’ve been in the business for 10 years and are interested, give it very serious thought. Making any sort of investment in these uncertain times is risky, but I can’t think of a safer, smarter choice for any owner of, or executive with, a small, medium or large PR firm.

In addition to learning best practices for running a business and managing people, you’ll be able to hang with some of the smartest people in the world. And, these guys also know how to have a good time. Go to Palm Springs. You can thank me with a drink at the La Quinta bar.

Click on this link to access all conference brochure content on the CA website .

Feb 28

Responsiveness 101

What do communications students from Marist College, Northeastern, the University of Vermont, the1_2
College of Charleston and the PRSSA share in common?

Almost all have failed to follow-up with me after being urged to post comments on my blog, submit a writing sample for my edits or just plain ask for my help in networking.

I’ll bet I’ve lectured before 500 or more college students in the past year alone. And, I’d guess that less than two percent have leveraged the ‘meetings’ to connect with me. These are the same kids who, in conversation with me, voice serious fears about successfully entering the workforce.

I’ve discussed the students’ lack of aggressiveness and follow up with search consultant par excellence, Bill Heyman. He agrees that, while the latest generation of college kids, live, eat and breathe all things digital, they lack either the competitive drive or intellectual wherewithal to connect, network and differentiate themselves as thought leaders.

I’m sure sociologists could have a field day with the various reasons why this is happening. But, in my mind, it comes down to two factors: my generation of parents has spoiled the current one, most of whom expect the business world to beat a path to their door. Second, the Web has become a virtual crutch of sorts enabling kids to avoid direct confrontation.

Regardless of the causes, we’re left with a group of kids who desperately want jobs, but seem reluctant or unwilling to roll up their sleeves and do it what it takes to succeed. File it all under the term ‘sense of entitlement.’