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Choiceortunities Mr. Webster……Choiceortunities

January 22, 2009

Choiceortunities…that’s right, I made up a word.

One quote you will hear me saying often to my staff, students and graduates; “Life is all about choices.” It is! Everything we do involves choice. Whether it is your career search, climbing your career ladder, deciding to turn your homework in on time or making the decision to make a fresh start there are choices at every turn that you need to consider.

Life also presents opportunities and they too are everywhere. We need to be cognizant to keep our eyes and ears open so an opportunity doesn’t pass us by. Networking and career opportunities can be found in the most inconspicuous places; talking to the guy sitting next to you at the airport, the woman in line at the grocery store or talking to the guy at the next table during lunch. The word “hello” opens doors; you just need to choose to be the person who is bold enough to say it.

This brings me to “Choiceortunities” where choice meets opportunity. Making the right choices when opportunity presents itself is critical to making the most of that opportunity. How many times do we think to ourselves, “I wish I had done that differently” or “if I could only do it over again”. Maximizing our opportunities through our choices or choiceortunities; how do we do it?

Scenario.

So let’s say that guy next to you at lunch is a manager at a company you’d love to work for. You find this information out by saying “Hello, how are you?” you’ve made the choice to open the door. The two of you have a nice little chat about current events (keep it neutral, no politics or religion); the weather and you each throw a name or two around in a “Do you know…” banter. What next?

Ask for a business card.

Wait a day or two.

Then email and let him know how nice it was to meet him, let him know how much you respect the company he works for and after giving a brief synopsis of your experience let him know that should any opportunities present themselves that you might be a fit for, to please let you know. Ask him if it would ok to send your resume to him. Follow up as appropriate but don’t go overboard, it is important to be respectful and subtle.

If you see any “good news” in the local paper about him or the company, write another email acknowledging the effort and congratulating the success.

If you formally apply for a job at his company, let him know and forward your resume to him. Ask him for insight into the position; people in management love to talk!

Go back to the place you had lunch from time to time to see if he is there. People are creatures of habit and it is likely that you will run into him again. Watch the company’s website for their upcoming events. Are they hosting a charity or community event? If so, attend who knows who else you might meet.

The moral of the blog is to always be on the lookout for opportunities and then back up those opportunities with wise choices that have the potential of heading in the direction you envision yourself going. Choiceortunities are everywhere and heck maybe by next year at this time it’ll even be a real word in the dictionary. Now there is a choiceortunity for “Mr. Webster”;)

Amy
You are welcome to email me at achastek@onl.herzing.edu or visit the coolest place to work and go to school at http://www.herzingonline.edu
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