Posts Tagged ‘networking’

The importance of building your entrepreneurial social safety net

safety netIncredibly enough, in a few weeks, our company PICnet will be 12 years old.  Considering that the idea for it started during a student government campaign at UCLA in May 1999, I’ve been working at the same job for almost 14 years.  To put that in perspective, on average, most folks in my generation are on their fourth job at this point in life.

I’ve experienced it all in growing a small business, as most boot-strappers have before me. From the soaring to the highest of highs, to the falling to the lowest of lows.  Through the process, I’ve learned more than I ever could have imagined about business, but more importantly, about the relationships you build with others that keep you moving forward.  I’m so incredibly thankful to have been blessed with such a great support network of people that truly care about me.

As I say quite often, the relationships we build are more important than the tools we build.

But even with friends, family, and loved ones there to support you, few, if any, really understand what is running through that entrepreneurial head of yours.  No matter how fantastic your business is doing, as an entrepreneur, you’re always working harder than you were the day before.  Running through our minds is often the quote from Andy Grove:  “only the paranoid survive.”

If you’re a fellow entrepreneur, or you’re getting ready to venture off into the startup of your own business, I have one small bit of advice for you.  Don’t go it alone.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not speaking about your business partner decision.  I’m talking about starting right now, today, your very own entrepreneurial social safety net.

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Connecting Young People Doing Good

Some of you might have heard of the Young Professionals Network. Well, did you know there is a version for those of us working in the non-profit sector? I belong to the DC chapter of Young Nonprofit Professionals Network (YNPN), a group dedicated to really making as much information as possible available to those in our field through job fairs, seminars and networking happy hours.

It’s amazing that there’s a forum out there to focus on younger people that are dedicated to the missions of many unique and important organizations. At these events, it’s great to hear different stories about the struggles and triumphs that all people in the non-profit world experience. Of course, I would be remiss to attend these events and not mention PICnet’s services, so I always have a quick blurb about us in the hopes of spreading the word about who we are and what we do. At the end of the day, even though I don’t make a sale, it’s still great to spread our mission and see how what we do aligns so clearly with what many non-profits need.

I think attending the YNPN events are a great way to create a community for non-profit organizations located all over the city. It’s amazing to learn how many non-profits could really use a website revamp, and once they learn PICnet does it for such an affordable price, they are quick to ask more about us.

For more information on YNPN and to find your local chapter, click here.