More tales from the networking world ...


Well, I didn’t have any “industry” profile this week, no “guest post”, nor other handy thing lined up to bring to you today, so I guess you’re stuck with my regaling you about my latest networking adventures.  As regular readers will recall, I try to get out to 2-4 events a week, but haven’t been making that many of late.  This week, however, I’m already up to 3, having had two yesterday, a breakfast featuring one of the authors of Content Rules, and a Chicago Tweet-Up in the evening that was a fund-raiser benefiting the Red Cross’ relief efforts in Japan.

Tonight I was off at Ignite Chicago to help my P2PMicroversity associate Ed Hubbard with his presentation. This is one of the projects on which I’ve been acting as a consultant (unfortunately, unpaid, but with equity), and I’ve cranked out quite a lot of hours on this over the past couple of weeks, developing his PowerPoint deck, and working up the note cards that he abandoned just before going on (I also shot a video of his talk which should be up on the P2P site sometime tomorrow).

The Ignite format is interesting as each speaker is supposed to come up with 20 slides (I suppose that’s an anachronistic term at this point, isn’t it?), which will be automatically triggered at 15-second intervals, providing for a 5-minute speech. This is the second of these I’ve been to (I missed the last one), and it’s interesting to see how different people adapt to the format. For those who are trying to follow a basic script, they can get quite lost, but those who time out their talk into 10-15 second blocks and let the changing slides cue them, it can be quite effective.

Tonight there were a dozen presentations, ranging from “How To Make Your Own Bacon” to “Questions Concerning Technology” (which looked at tech from the perspective of the philosopher Heidegger!). Ed’s presentation on “Social Education” was well received, and generated a lot of conversations afterward.

The event was at the always-remarkable Catalyst Ranch (down at the historic Haymarket Square), which is somewhat like going to an event in Pee-wee‘s Playhouse! It was well-attended (especially given that it was going up against a couple of other events), with nearly 100 folks showing up. A good evening all the way around: promoting P2PMicroversity, networking, and hearing some interesting talks.

Again, networking is a key element in every job search, and if you live in the Chicago market, there are literally hundreds of things available every week (heck, MeetUp alone lists 854 area events in their calendar for this week) … so your challenge should be more of deciding which to go to, rather that finding one!

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