Why I Love WIC

I tend to stay away from self-promoting on blogs, Twitter, Facebook, etc. It’s just not my thing — probably because I really dislike hard sells. And as a board member of Women in Consulting (WIC), responsible for its marketing & PR no less, writing a piece on “why I love WIC” is considered self-promotion. However, in this instance, I just can’t help myself; and WIC’s latest monthly meeting is the reason.

In this one meeting, I was reminded of the many reasons why WIC is so important to me as a consultant, both personally and professionally.

  • Collaborative environment and rich information sharing: collaboration is the chief quality that truly sets WIC apart from other organizations. I’ve not met one person who isn’t willing to share best practices, insights, resources, and more. All you have to do is ask, and you’ll have an amazing number of members responding immediately.
  • Amazing connections and friendships, and an unbelievable support system: I never cease to be amazed at the brain power and talent that make up WIC. As a WIC member, you have access to some of the best minds in the Bay Area. WIC’s collaborative-not-competitive environment also fosters close relationships, resulting in some wonderful friendships. The business life of a consultant can often be solitary; but with WIC, it doesn’t feel that way at all. No matter the business challenge, I know I can call any number of my WIC friends/colleagues for advice. They not only listen willingly, they offer spot-on advice. They also happily celebrate my successes.
  • Numerous learning opportunities: whether it’s a table discussion at a WIC meeting, a guest speaker, an email exchange on the WIC Community List, an article or blog post by a WIC member, or some other WIC communication exchange, I learn something.
  • Business opportunities: I can attribute at least 75% of my business over the past two years to my involvement with WIC, and another 15% to following the best practices advocated in meetings. One of the reasons I get so much out of WIC is because I’m involved. I’ve been a member since 2002 and started volunteering in 2004. Participating in the organization has been an amazing business booster. My WIC colleagues provide me with invaluable advice, and they also are a great source of business — either hiring me on their engagements or referring me to clients. Even at Thursday’s meeting, two different people whom I hadn’t met previously recognized my name because someone had referred them to me for a project.
  • Inspiration: I always leave a meeting feeling jazzed and excited; and it’s because of the energy that fills the room. People care. They listen. They share. You hear their latest triumphs and business plans and you leave energized to do more. And this happens even when the economy isn’t doing well. It did this past meeting.
  • Great meeting topics: no matter the topic, I typically walk away with at least one usable tip or strategy. For example, April’s meeting on “Attract new Clients and Increase Revenue Now!” I learned some tips for positioning the initial evaluations I do for clients, whether or not I choose to charge for the evaluation — a topic that was much debated at the meeting. Even if a topic is way off base from your philosophy or interests, chances are you can still find something of value. I always do. It’s just a matter of perspective.
  • Delicious food: the mushroom ravioli at Quadrus is beyond yummy, as was the other food. So often food at networking events is at best tolerable. Not so here.

These are just a few of the reasons I love WIC, and the ones that presented themselves at last Thursday’s meeting. If you’re a consultant or small business owner, you really should check WIC out, read about exclusive member discounts, attend a meeting, or even sign up as an affiliate on the WIC Community Email List — where you’ll see information sharing on steroids among some of the best consulting minds in the Bay Area (and beyond, for that matter).

avery@aveconsulting.com' About Avery Horzewski

Principal of AVE Consulting, Avery is a marketing and customer communications consultant, and serves on WIC's board of directors as president. As a consultant, she works with companies of all sizes to develop compelling, persuasive, and effective customer-centric marketing and communication strategies that encompass everything from websites to social media to print collateral. Avery assumed the role of WIC president in January 2010, after overseeing the organization’s marketing, PR, social media, and website initiatives for three years.

Comments

  1. jeanlombard@me.com' Jean Lombard says

    Tonight’s WIC meeting was no exception! I am sure I speak for all attendees when I say that our speaker, Olivia Fox Cabane delivered a fact-filled, thought provoking, spellbinding presentation. My mind is full of new ideas and I gained at least 10 better ways to “read” decision-makers in various (challenging) business environments.

  2. Yes, Jean, the March 18 meeting was definitely no exception. Like you, I left with a full mind. I’m glad that you enjoyed it!

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