After traveling to Wilmington, MA, a for a couple of WIND (Wednesday is Networking Day) meetings, I decided to check out the one in Portsmouth, NH. It's held twice monthly instead of every week. Having seen the growing "success" of the one in Wilmington, I wasn't sure what to expect as I arrived at Franklin Pierce College branch at the Pease Tradeport. The first problem was finding the meeting. The building was mostly deserted and there were no signs indicating where the meeting was being held. I finally noticed a guy climbing the stairs at one end of the building and decided to follow him. The meeting was there and a number of people had already arrived. I did the usual thing, introducing myself to some of the others and having conversations about what people did and how their search was going.
The group was decidedly smaller than the Wilmington one. With two new members to Wind, and two or three people I recognized from Wilmington, there were a grand total of 12, not including the facilitator and the speaker. This made it easier to get to know a few people, and to learn more about the people you did meet. The speaker was really good. She was a 60+ year old career counselor. I mention her age only because she had more energy than most people half her age. She was also very funny, as well as being useful. She did a bit of talking, then we all worked on our "commercials", which is about the same as an elevator statement or positioning statement. Some of us got to give them to the group and got critiqued. I wrote one and was chosen to give it to the group. I received a few good ideas for improvement which I will add. I also need to practice saying it some more.
The meeting was useful and in the whole, entertaining. One thing I got out of today's meeting was that there are so many project managers on the market that I need to find something to differentiate myself from the other project managers. I think I'm going to go with my ability to rescue projects in trouble, a.k.a. "The Closer" as my hook. You have to do something to stand out.
I liked the closer venue, the smaller size and if they keep having speakers as good as the one this week, the MIND is definitely a win over the WIND.