Tag Archives: Networking

Episode 84: Stop Job Seeking and Start Networking | Tom Dowd, aka Transformation Tom, author of Displacement Day

Thomas Dowd talks about networking when you are job seekingThomas Dowd is the author of his book, Displacement Day. It’s about trying to recover from losing a job and going out job hunting. One of the things that I thought was very interesting was the way he would go about job seeking and how he recommends others do it as well. It’s the difference between networking and job searching.

Thomas Dowd, or Transformation Tom, is the author of “Displacement Day: When My Job was Looking for a Job…A Reference Guide to Finding Work.” With over twenty-three years of experience in the financial industry in management and leadership roles at the same organization, Thomas Dowd received the call nobody wanted: “We’re downsizing.” What could have been a devastating day, immediately turned into a journey toward his next book “Displacement Day.”

Zeb’s Take – Networking while Job Seeking

I really liked the fact that he brought up how to go about finding a job. Recently, I’ve been approached by a couple people who tell me that they’re looking for jobs. When they come up to me and they ask, “Hey, I’m looking for a job. I don’t have a job. Is there anything that I can do?” Desperately I want to try to help them in some capacity, but it’s tough to think of a way to do that. Sometimes I think of people that I might know to put them in touch with.

What Tom brought up in the interview was that instead of being a job seeker, instead of asking people for jobs all the time. Which actually can be kind of a weird feeling, because the person you’re asking, it feels a little uncomfortable because they want to help, but they can feel like they are in control of your destiny… it’s a lot of pressure and makes it a more uncomfortable conversation, I think. Where, if you look at it as you are networking with someone who could potentially give you a job, and not so much like, “hey I need a job, give me a job.” Instead, going in there and asking asking them questions about their business, what is it that they well, how do people get that job, how do they excel in that industry. By asking those questions it’s more of a relationship where you have two people engaging and discussing together. It’s more comfortable for the other people involved. It’s really a great way to think about job seeking and looking for jobs.

In the interview I mentioned that I went around the country, and check out Craigslist and just blast my resume out everywhere. Say, “Hey, I need a job! I need a job! I need a job!” I’m telling everyone, and it didn’t work for me. If I had gone about it differently and I had looked for ways to network with those people I think I would have had better results.

If you are looking for a job, follow Tom’s advice.

Now, go out there and find your success!

Find Out More About Tom Down and His BookThomas Dowd's book Displacement Day

Go to TransformationTom.com

Tom’s book, Displacement Day: When My Job Was Looking for a Job, is available in regular book form and ebook form on Amazon. Just search for the title “Displacement Day.”



  • “It wasn’t my communication skills, it was actually my confidence level. By gaining this confidence I learned to communicate much more effectively.”
  • “It’s not about getting the project done. It’s about building the right relationships with the right people to get the job done.”
  • “When I stopped trying to impress and start being myself I gained the confidence, I gained the skills, and I found a whole lot more success.”
  • “I had built the network, I felt really good about it, and I built it before I needed it.”
  • “Networking isn’t just checking off a box. It’s about building a true relationship. A mutual relationship.”
  • “Stop job seeking and start networking.”
  • “In these networking sessions, never leave it without asking the question, who else can I meet with? And run with it.”
  • “The important part of the network is that you start the process, but the network does the work for you if you allow it to.”
  • “As soon as I became a better teacher I became a better learner. By becoming a better learner I became a better teacher.”
  • “I believe in who I am, and more importantly, I believe in who I can still be.”

Dowd2      TomDowd

More From the Interview

Tom was a communications major at the University of Delaware. He graduated on a Friday and started work at a Finance company on a Monday. Worked there in several positions for over 23 years. When his company was taken over and went from a 28,000 person organization to a 300,000 person organization, he had to make a mental adjustment: decide if he was going to be swallowed up in the 300,000 person organization or did he want to make a difference. He joined Host Masters, a worldwide organization that helps to improve communication skills and leadership skills, it was that that boosted Tom’s confidence through the roof. It allowed him to do things within his own professional state, and within the organization to make a difference in the organization. He wrote a couple books while he was at that job. One was on his own transformation of becoming self aware and the other on public speaking.

“I was told for 18 years on my performance appraisals that I couldn’t communicate I was told that I have some issues with those skills: listening, yapping, not being clear/concise, not being confident in how I communicated with senior leaders. So I ended up joining Toast Masters, I found during a time, it wasn’t my communication skills, it was actually my confidence level. By gaining this confidence I learned to communicate much more effectively.”

In Toast Masters, he competed in these speech competitions. Twice he got as far as one speech away from the world semi-finals. He met many people who helped him in his journey of communication, confidence and leadership. He gained mentors. One of whom inspired him to write about leadership, success, and how to be a better speaker.

Screen Shot 2014-06-03 at 8.47.03 AM

“I became much more successful when I learned to be myself. Which believe it or not is where my confidence came from. I found myself trying to impress so many people at my job. When I stopped trying to impress and start being myself I gained the confidence, I gained the skills, and I found a whole lot more success.”

To clarify what he means by “Being Yourself.” He was learning to build trust and build relationships. Tom compares his work-self to his home-self. There’s the Tom who is sitting at the dinner table having a conversation with his family, laughing, joking, casual. It’s not about communication or confidence, it’s just being Tom. And then he goes to work, has a tie choking him around the neck, a white collar, get the job done, force the hand of the people around him, give them critical feedback whether they want it or not, who never missed his goals, never missed hitting his numbers.

He got lots of criticism. There were a few people who gained his trust. One of them talked to him and asked him about his relationships with the other people at the company. It helped him realize things he needed to change. He had a reputation as an uptight guy who gets the job done, but people were concerned about his leadership abilities.

Once a month he would pick up the phone and talk to somebody he didn’t know, and who were a couple levels above him in the organization. To push his comfort zone and to reinventing himself. He would tell them about what he’s been doing at the organization and what they’ve been doing. How they could maybe help each other. He became a better listener, a better business partner, became more successful because he stopped trying to impress people and just worried about the job. The people became more important to him.

“I became this push and pull man. I’m gonna push you when you need it and I’m gonna pull you in and figure out what you can do to help yourself.”

“It’s not about getting the project done. It’s about building the right relationships with the right people to get the job done.”

“I was trying to change people. What I really needed to do was change me to be who I wanted to be while still getting the best out of people.”

When he found out his company was downsizing, he said that phone call was almost calming. He has such confidence in the network he built, in the skills he had, in his vulnerability to learn from his mistakes and develop who he wanted to be, he says he saw the whole world ahead of him and said, “Okay.” He wasn’t worried.

“I had built the network, I felt really good about it, and I built it before I needed it.”

“Networking isn’t just checking off a box. It’s about building a true relationship. A mutual relationship.”

“Stop job seeking and start networking.”

Tom stopped asking for a job and started working to build his relationships with people in his network. He had to reinvent himself to them so they would know what he was looking for. Also, he says one of the biggest things he learned was don’t make assumptions. Because he assumed that people in his network, certain people, would support him – drop everything they’re doing to give Tom advice, give him a direction, a path. That wasn’t always the case He realized that they were too close to him. They knew exactly what he wanted and what he didn’t want. It was the secondary network, people who knew people, who had new conversations with Tom about what are you looking for? what do you want? and that led to the first chapter of his book.

By talking to his secondary network Tom realized that maybe he didn’t need to go back into the financial industry. Another assumption. He had the speaking stuff, this coaching, this training world that maybe he could turn into a job.

If you’re networking, instead of job seeking, there is no expectation. It takes the pressure away from the situation so they won’t shy away.

Tom says to have an elevator speech, whether you’re employed or not. Think about what do you want people to know about you. What is your greatest accomplishment. Have a 2 min, 5 min, 10 min version of who you are that you can share.

“In these networking sessions, never leave it, without asking the question, who else can I meet with, and run with it.”

Tom says, that’s when you see the spiderweb of network.

“The important part of the network is that you start the process, but the network does the work for you if you allow it to.”

That’s where you move past sympathy and into action.

He says, I had a little credibility issue as I was trying to coach and train people on how to write resumes and network while I was unemployed. I continued to do that while I was job seeking. I talked to people that had been looking for jobs for over two years. I found a lot of people who would not apply for a job because they met a few of the requirements, but they did not quite meet everything within the job description. He says the hiring manager put down the absolute perfect candidate, probably no one is going meet everything on that job description. He also recommends that have to differentiate yourself, all resume’s look the same. Make your story come alive. Your resume should read like a book. It is the introductory chapter, make people want to read the rest of the book.

“People are just too vanilla in their resumes.”

People always get frozen in these situations.

Always have a plan. Wake up like you have a job. Have a plan of attack for the day. Send emails, make phone calls, schedule and go to meetings. What is your marketing plan? What companies are you going to target?

Until someone offers you a job and you’re unpacking your boxes at that organization you need to continue job searching. When “I got my full time job offer, I was ecstatic, I told my wife, I came back upstairs to the laptop and I continued my job search until I had the official contract signed.” It wasn’t a lack of confidence that he’d get the job, it was how many times did things fall through before becoming official.

“As soon as I became a better teacher, I became a better learner. By becoming a better learner I became a better teacher.”

“I learned that I can be the person I want to be. I learned to be willing to be the student. I became a better listener. I became a better person, a better business partner.”

Anyone out there that considers themselves a failure. I would tell them to go back and revisit themselves. You shouldn’t be striving for perfection, you should be striving for excellence and really strive to make yourself a better person.

“I believe in who I am, and more importantly, I believe in who I can still be.”


Episode 81: Twitter and Relationship Building | John Sparks, Owner of Online ImageWorks

John Sparks talks Twitter and building relationships online in this episode of the Defining Success Podcast.John Sparks owns his own social media company, an internet marketing business where he helps businesses expand their reach online: Online Image Works. One of the things he prides himself on is his experience on Twitter and how he’s been able to use Twitter to build a massive following and build some word-of-mouth marketing. In this interview he has some great tips and advice on using Twitter.

John Sparks is the Owner and CEO of Online ImageWorks. He has a passion for helping others learn about social media and technology and has become known as a nationally recognized social media coach.

Zeb’s Take – Twitter and Building Relationships Online

It was a blast talking with John. It’s always great to talk with someone in the same space as I am. We were talking about Twitter. I love the examples he gave and how he was able to help people out with Twitter. One of the things that he said that I thought was interesting was strategically stalking people with excellence in a good way. He mentioned it a couple of times. It’s something he uses to build a Twitter following and get people to engage and interact with him on Twitter and it could be used on other social media channels as well.

What he does is, if there is a person he wants to go after (he used the example of Oprah) he will do a little research and find out who is really connected to that person. Then he reaches out to those people, works to build a relationship, a genuine relationship, and potentially get that opportunity to meet the person you’re trying to go after.

I’ve never used Twitter in that sense, but it’s not a bad idea. On LinkedIn they do have that function sort of built in to their system. One of the cool things LinkedIn does is show your connections and how you are connected to them. For example, if I wanted to target golf course general managers, I could search for that and in the results it will show my connections. 1st Degree Connections are people that I’m already connected with. 2nd Degree Connections are people who are connected to someone that I know. If that is the case, I can ask for an introduction from the person I know who is connected with the person I’m trying to get a hold of.

LinkedIn is great for that, but I really like how John is using that same idea and strategy for Twitter. That has been working well for him. He’s been able to build up quite the following. He’s one of the top Tweeters in Dallas, which is very cool.

It was a great interview. I hope you learned a lot about using twitter and social media. Thanks to John for the great interview.

Go out there and find your success.

Find out more about John Sparks or Online ImageWorks

Visit OnlineImageWorks.com, which is his website hub.
John can also be found on all the social media platforms at /iamJohnSparks (ex. facebook.com/iamJohnSparks, twitter.com/iamJohSparks and at gplus.to/iamJohnSparks)Online ImageWorks


  • “It’s building those relationships online and then taking them offline.”
  • “You can have anything that you want in life if you just help enough other people get what they want.”
  • “People reach out to people who reach out.”
  • “Make sure when you’re messaging people that your intentions are coming across as being good natured.”


More From the Interview

John has a media background working at television stations across the country. He was a newscast writer for broadcast journalism. Then ventured into the business world, then into education and finally was able to bring all that together when he started his business Online ImageWorks.

Social media, and the whole idea of people being able to access things when they want to and to interact was really exciting to John. The idea of using his background and skills to help people use these tools properly convinced him to start his own company.

Among other things John works on SEO, conducting social media campaigns, websites, design and coaching. It’s important to make sure people’s name looks good out there online. Coaching, how to use social media; sharing the idea that people reach out to people who reach out and that it’s a powerful tool if it’s used correctly.

Twitter is John’s favorite social media platform. The area where we can have instant communication is interesting.

Businesses can use twitter to engage customers and as a listening tool.

John says businesses should use social media for several reasons. Social media increases your visibility. It shows people that you have something of value that you are offering in the market. It gives your business the chance to show what makes you different from everybody else. It can help you stand out in the crowd. And, it’s a great relationship builder; everyone wants to feel like they are welcome, special and appreciated. It’s building those relationships online and then taking them offline. It’s a great stepping stone for the offline conversations that happen later on for businesses to convert customers into possible clients down the line.

John sees so many companies that put up a twitter logo or pinterest logo and then you go there and there’s nothing there. There is nobody managing it. John’s advice for those companies is that if you’re not using the tools then get rid of the links.

What’s one trick or piece of advice that the average person may not know about social media and how to use it effectively?
Strategically stalking people in excellence in a good way.

The people that they are most socially influenced by on Twitter are the people at the very bottom of their friends list. Those are the people that instantly came to their mind when they first joined Twitter.

Oprah, just for an example, follows about let’s say 230 people. So if you can interact with and build a relationship with one of those people on Twitter. Then you could potentially get an introduction from that person. Thinking about LinkedIn and their 1st 2nd and 3rd connections, look through her list, look through their lists, look for Oprah’s 3rd connections. Look towards the bottom of the list and pick out the ones that do not have the verified account, the blue checkmark. Those people are probably going to be easier to connect with.

John says a lot of cool things have happened over the last 2 years owning Online ImageWorks. Just having the opportunity to work with some of these people and watching their businesses grow. John says seeing these Twitter accounts grow to a point where they’re getting verified on Twitter and build a following by thousands, and it’s not just about the number of the followers, but about the quality of the followers you have.

In conversations with people on twitter you have to be really careful how you talk with people so you don’t offend them. Twitter has the reputation of being light and fluffy. Where people don’t hear your voice, they don’t know your voice, they don’t know your true intentions. So make sure when you’re messaging people that your intentions are coming across as being good natured.

How did you get where you are?
Going out there and basically, I wanted to be a social media influencer. I’m soon to be on the Forbes and Huffington Post list of top 50 social media influencers. Going through and doing my research and finding out, okay if this is what I want to be who are the people that are on that list right now, and who is following those people, and how can I get some of those people to come follow me. And what can I add of value to get those people to follow me.

I would say finding those people that are in your industry that you’re interested in. And making a list of those people. And then going out and seeing who’s following those people. Provide good content and follow those individuals and see if you can engage with those people and follow them as well.

On Twitter, you just have to get out there and do it. Get out there follow people, engage, you’re going to make some mistakes, it’s gonna happen; mentioning people incorrectly, retweeting incorrectly… but you just gotta do it.

Define Success
John recommends the book, See You at the Top.
You can have anything that you want in life if you just help enough other people get what they want. That’s what success is about.

You have to have that positive mindset and take every positive thought captive. Turn those negative thoughts into thoughts of being successful. Even in your darkest moment. If not, you’re going to get sidetracked.

That positive self talk that’s so critical when starting a business and being successful on social media. John prides himself on his positive uplifting tweets — It’s amazing how many people go out there and will retweet those over and over again.


Episode 80: Networking vs Working a Room with the Mingling Maven | Susan RoAne, Author of How To Work a Room

Author Susan RoAne talks about networing and working a roomThis episode I interview the Mingling Maven, Susan RoAne. She is the author of How to Work a Room. In the interview she gives great ideas on having conversations with people, how to start those conversations, and how to feel comfortable in those scenarios. One of the things she highlighted was the difference between working a room and networking. The real key to networking is in the follow-up.

Susan RoAne, or the Mingling Maven, is the best selling author of How to Work a Room. If you’ve ever walked into a roomful of strangers and felt uncomfortable, you’re not alone. According to research, over 90% feel the same way. Because it’s essential, to building our businesses as well as our personal life, we must be able to comfortably attend gatherings and meet, connect and converse with people we don’t know as well as the ones we do.

Working a room and networking in Susan Roane's book How To Work a Room

Zeb’s Take

What a great interview with Susan. She gave a lot of really great tidbits of information about how you can work a room, how you can feel comfortable in networking situations and meeting new people. I really love the advice she gave.

One of the things she pointed out that I’d like to talk about more is the difference between networking and working a room. Working a room is the initial interactions, initial discussions, and how to make sure your presence is known throughout the room. The networking side of it is through the follow-up. Networking isn’t the mingling and interacting at the location, it’s the follow-up afterwards and that is where the value comes in with networking.

I’ve seen it a lot at networking events. Business owners go wanting to grow their business and they expect outcomes the first time they show up. They walk in, they’re interacting with everybody, they are very outgoing, shaking everyone’s hand and exchange business cards. But they don’t get any business that one day and you’ll never see those people return again. I know from experience with our Chamber of Commerce that my continued presence there, the follow up I did with the people I met at the chamber, that ultimately it led to a lot of sales for me and my business down the road, as people began to trust and know me. Now that I’ve gotten better and gotten more experience at networking I have a good system set in place that encourages follow up, that promotes myself and reaching out to people. Then it’s either getting coffee with them or just connecting through email or social media networks.

The networking at the event is not the goal, it’s about the follow-up afterwards. If you are going to networking events to get the most value out of it make sure you follow up with the people you meet at those events. Because there is always an opportunity. Even if they are not going to be a customer for your business they have the potential to refer your business or connect you with people who can benefit your business. You can also help them in different capacities and build a relationship that way.

Go out there and find your success!

Find out more about Susan Roanne, The Mingling Maven

Go to www.SusanRoane.com or HowToWorkARoom.com
Email Susan at Susan@SusanRoane.com with your questions

Her Book, How To Work a Room
She says, “Please go to your local bookstore, if they don’t have it on the shelf they will order it for you. We have to support our local book stores. But of course it’s in online bookstores. The book is How to Work a Room, the Silver Anniversary Edition.”

Susan RoAne, Best-Selling Author and Keynote Speaker


  • “I think that’s part of success, being willing to say yes and stretching ourselves.”
  • ” If you are not re-tweeting, letting someone know you appreciated a tweet, responding, engaging, commenting then you are a lurker, not a worker.”
  • “I found that the people who created their own luck[…], they said yes when they wanted to say no.”
  • “Real networking happens over time, it’s a process. It’s not something that happens once at an event.”
  • “The people who I find with the most success are people that have diverse relationships with people of different ages, different backgrounds, different interests; as well as those who are in their field.”
  • “Some of the best networkers are people who used to be shy, but they realized there was a benefit to meeting interesting people.”
  • “The banquet of banter is a potluck: what are you bringing to the banquet?”
  • “Bring who you are to what you do.”
  • “At a certain point the stuff that we have isn’t as important as the stuff we’re made of.”

susan      susan2

More from the Interview

Susan was a former public school teacher in Chicago and San Francisco. In San Francisco they had massive layoffs, Susan was one of them. She was then able to help former teachers find new career paths. That evolved into Susan writing books including How to Work a Room. She designed a career change workshop for teachers. Made sure it got on radio. When the editor of the San Francisco Examiner contacted her to do a local career series she said, “Yes.” She immediately got a headache because she wasn’t sure what she had gotten herself into.

“I think that’s part of success, being willing to say yes and stretching ourselves.”

Susan’s Book – How To Work A Room

The main premise of her book is to make it easy for any person that has to walk into a room, a meeting, a party, a reunion, a wedding, a conference, a retreat. So that no one stands at the door and feels uncomfortable walking into a room full of people they may not know. Susan’s mission is to take away that discomfort and help people prepare so they can make the most of whatever event they are going to.

In a Room

If Susan is at an event and sees someone standing alone, she’s the one that will seek them out and try to start a conversation with them. Because, she says, one of the top traits of people we really remember are the people who noticed us, came over to us, made us feel included. For the people already in the room, being cognizant of the people who are alone and welcoming them is not only a wonderful trait, it’s a brilliant business strategy.

For the first version of her book, Susan did most of her research at her local chamber. She saw things that people did that were wonderful. She also saw things that made her question how some people were raised.

Being able to work a room is a skill. To be a networker is a different skill. There are people that are wonderful in a room; we’ve all seen them, they are very conversant, they are interesting, fun to be around, but they have no interest in following up and no skill at following up. In her book Susan refers to these people as One-Night-Stands.

There are people out there with phenomenal networking skills. Networking is really the key to success. They have immense follow-up. They do what they say they’re going to do when they say they’re going to do it. They stay in touch. Those same people may feel very uncomfortable when they walk into a room full of strangers.

Those two skills together, working a room and networking, really are dramatic and they contribute to our personal and professional success.

New Rooms

Whether it’s Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, there are new rooms that we need to appropriately work, appropriately be social in, and behave appropriately in. Each one has a different etiquette. If you are not re-tweeting, letting someone know you appreciated a tweet, responding, engaging, commenting then “you are a lurker, not a worker.”

Twitter is the most fascinating time-suck Susan has ever experienced that does not involve the TV.

In video chats for Skype and Google Hangouts, make sure you look great. Make sure you have the right lighting and that it’s not too dark. It’s different on the camera than it is to your eyes. Look at your office and make sure it looks they way you want it to be seen. When you are doing something face to face remember that you are really in that room with them, so you have to remember the same manners you would have in a real room. It’s still about paying attention and listening. Don’t look at your smartphone while you’re in a Google Hangout.


Susan still loves speaking at a to universities and colleges. Sharing these techniques to empower a whole new group of people so they can go to places and meet people and get the first job, or the second or third. Even at high schools; giving kids the tools so they can connect with each other and people they need to know. “I think it’s wonderful.”

“I found that the people who created their own luck[…], they said yes when they wanted to say no.”


For people that feel uncomfortable going to an event, know that if you come prepared you will feel more comfortable. There are some things you can prepare ahead of time. There’s no reason now, with the internet, that you can’t do some research on the event ahead of time so you’re not walking in cold. Prepare your own self introduction, it should be specific to the event. Susan says her introduction at her chamber of commerce meetings is very different than at a friend’s wedding. Tailor your introduction to give people context for how to talk to you. It’s not the 30 second upchucking of an elevator speech; it’s 7-9 seconds, it’s a pleasantry. Give the benefit of what you do set in an interesting fun way that engages people so they get to ask what it means. Then you are invited to speak more. Only go on a little bit. Stop, look at the other person and say, “How about you?” not, “What do you do?” how about you, it allows them to talk about their passion which could be something different than their job.

How are networking and working the room different?

Working a room, you’re really just socializing. You’re mixing, meeting, greeting, you’re having a lot of little conversations and you’re circulating. It’s a social party. Nobody invites you to hog the time of one other guest.

Networking is very specific in that it’s the follow-up. You can’t network a room. Networking is a mutually beneficial process whereby we change ideas, information, ideas, advice, laughter. The real networking happens over time, it’s a process, it’s not something that happens once at an event. When you are developing a network you are developing a group of people where there is a stronger connection and it is the beginning of building relationships.

“The people who I find with the most success are people that have diverse relationships with people of different ages, different backgrounds, different interests; as well as those who are in your field.”


Just look at the room/the event you’re going to. That’s what’s happening to everyone, it’s something in common. Susan talks about the food, she talks about how long it took to find a parking space. Look for name tags. If you are at a fundraiser, ask how someone came to support the cause. Say something that’s relevant to the event at hand, because that makes sense. It’s easy, it starts the conversation with small talk and then you can move from there.

Complement a tie, a nice scarf, an interesting necklace. It’s okay to compliment someone as long as it’s sincere. Notice things: pins, ties, jewelry; then you are in an easier conversation.

If you want to have something interesting to talk about make sure you know what’s going on in the world. Get it from a newspaper, online, TV, anywhere. Know what’s going on and you can always talk to other people.

For the Shy

In 1980 about 80% of people considered themselves shy, by 2000 it jumped to 93%. If you think you are shy, know that at least 90% of people in that room also feel shy sometimes. Some of the best networkers are people who used to be shy, but they realized there was a benefit to meeting interesting people. So they approach it as, “Oh my goodness, isn’t this great! I’m going to meet interesting people therefore I’m going to learn new things.” and it’s that attitude that gets them over the shyness.

“Some of the best networkers are people who used to be shy. but they realized there was a benefit to meeting interesting people.”

Susan suggests that if you walk into an event with someone that you don’t stay with them for the whole evening. Decide to split up and talk to other people then come back and introduce people to each other. Even for couples. Don’t stand face-to-face talking to each other; stand side-by-side facing room.

Susan’s Top Tips for a Great Conversation

Number one: Listen. Listen. Listen.

Two: “The banquet of banter is a potluck: what are you bringing to the banquet?” Be sure to bring your favorite stores. Listen to other people’s stories. Susan does this thing where she barrows other people’s stories, you can relate to people with kids even if you don’t have any. If you listen and pay attention to their stories that’s another story you can share to someone that has similar interests.

For conversation it’s listen, participate, don’t be afraid to ask questions, and don’t ask only questions. Share something of yourself.

“Bring who you are to what you do.”

On Success

“Can you look in your own mirror and feel comfortable with the person you are, how you treat people, how you’ve walked around this planet; and what your contribution has been?”

“It’s how you treat people.”

“I have a wonderful network of people around the world that I’ve stayed in touch with that has made me have the most wonderful life.”

“I want to know that when you’ve listened to me that you’ve got something that you can do to make your life just a little bit easier, better, and that to me is success.”

“At a certain point the stuff that we have isn’t as important as the stuff we’re made of.”


The Kingdom Net: Learning to Network Like Jesus

The Kingdom Net: Learning to Network Like Jesus by Dr. Joseph Castleberry was recently made available and we’re excited to give the listeners of the Defining Success Podcast the opportunity to check it out.

If you’re interested in learning about marketing or becoming a marketing expert, it’s important to learn from the best.  Jesus used networking not for his own selfish needs but to be of service to others.  Dr. Joseph Castleberry explores the necessities of networking and how you can use it to apply to all aspects of your life in his new book.

The greatest networker in history was Jesus Christ. Beginning with a team of three close friends and a dozen followers, He created an organization that today has over 2 billion members.

Jesus networked for a single purpose: to introduce people to the kingdom of God. No product, service, or personal friendship can meet the needs of people more completely than ushering them into God’s rule. Jesus used networking to deliver to humanity the highest level of service that anyone has ever offered.

Regardless of your line of work, adopting the Jesus style of networking can take your life and career to a new level. By networking His way, you can achieve greater success in your career or professional life. You can enhance your personal life through building more and better friendships. You can find more significance in your life by ratcheting up the level and breadth of service you provide to others. Learning to network like Jesus will help you make the most of your life for God and for others.

The Kingdom Net Learning to Network Like Jesus by Dr. Joseph Castleberry

The Kingdom Net


Episode 47: Network Like Jesus | Author Dr. Joseph Castleberry

Dr. Joseph Castleberry shares his experience networking and connecting with new people in a variety of locations over his career.  In his new book, The Kingdom Net: Learning to Network Like Jesus, he shares how Jesus was able to network and how you can network like Jesus for your business or career.  Learn to network like Jesus in Episode 47 of the Defining Success Podcast!

Dr. Joseph Castleberry The Kingdom Net: Learning to Network Like Jesus

Dr. Joseph Castleberry

Joseph Castleberry is the president of Northwest University.  He enjoys writing, and his second popular book, The Kingdom Net:  Learning to Network Like Jesus, launches in August, 2013.  A native of Alabama, he came to the Pacific Northwest after a transcultural career that took him and his family to New Jersey, New York City, Texas, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Ecuador, and Missouri before his soft landing on the banks of Lake Washington.

Dr. Joseph Castleberry started attending school at a very young age and at five years old, he knew that he had a strong connection with God and religion and he’s always been that way.

When Joseph was 12 years old he attended a camp and one student told everyone that God had called on him to preach and it really got his attention.  Joseph then prayed to God and said that was what he wanted to do and from then on he began preaching.  A few years later he came to his mother and knew that he wanted to preach to intellectual people.

He also had a strong calling to aid in poverty in Latin America and at 15 he traveled to Honduras and experienced the poverty in the area.  Honduras was the poorest country in the hemisphere that year and he saw real human misery up close.  He was amazed at the power of faith to help lift people up out of trouble, misery and poverty and he felt strongly attracted to Latin America.

In college, Dr. Castleberry fell in love with scholarship.  He took Greek and Hebrew and began studying the Bible from a critical perspective and an academic perspective and felt a strong desire to become a professor.

At 21, a family tragedy struck and he was praying to God and he sensed God’s promise to him that he would some day be a college president.  His first full-time job was a chaplain at Princeton University.

He then went to El Salvador as a missionary and taught classes at the University and planted a church in front of the Naitonal University and spent 20 years as a missionary in El Salvador, Ecuador and all over the Latin American region.

He had finished his doctorate from Columbia University during that time and came back as the academic dean in Missouri and five years later he was elected as the president of Northwest University in Washington.

One of my gifts was my ability to make friends and to keep them.  And I had an ability to connect people to be able to help others become better.

Joseph had a strong desire to work with intellectuals and make a difference in the lives of poor people.  He came from a poverty stricken family and he was the first person in his family to go to college and he had a connection with people who were struggling with poverty.

He spent his career in his academy and the other half of his time he spent building churches.  The Latin American professional class is a delightful group of people with a hopeful view of the people.  As a pasteur he was always good at getting them involved in helping poor individuals across Latin America.

As a pasteur in Ecuador, he started a church in a gated community, but the truth is that church had so many different ethnic groups and so many different socio-economic backgrounds.  It was a really interesting mixture of people.

If you build your church around the culture of poor people, you will only reach poor people.  If you build a church for the upper-middle class, you can reach everyone.

Joseph Castleberry came to Northwest University to be the president of the University and he didn’t know a soul when he moved there.  He had no network at all and had to start meeting people really fast.

He joined rotary clubs and local organizations and he made friends and started developing more connections in his community.

If you look at Jesus’ own networking methods the very first people who he called upon were fishermen.  He called upon them because fishermen were great networkers because they knew how to catch the fish, get them inland and then learned how to sell them.  So they had experience at getting a product to market.

People think of networking as if someone is trying to get something from themselves.  All of the networking Jesus did was seeing how he could serve other people.  When people recognize that you have a heart of service, that’s where business is the most elegant.

There is good business and bad business.  The person who does business in order to take advantage of people, they wind up paying the price in other ways because life is more than how much money you have.

Dr. Joseph Castleberry The Kingdom Net: Learning to Network Like Jesus

Dr. Joseph Castleberry

Engaging Discussion Questions:

  • What do you think of business people?
  • What can you do to network like Jesus?
  • What are you doing to serve people?

Links to Great Stuff:

The Kingdom Net – “Jesus came to proclaim the Kingdom of God; he built the Kingdom Net to keep the word and work of God spreading.”

Success Quotes:

  • “Success means achieving the purpose for which you’re in the world.”
  • “The most dignified label a person can wear is employer.”
  • “Human beings need a purpose and a mission. They need something to accomplish and if they don’t have accomplishments, it’s impossible for them to be happy.”
  • “Nothing has ever taken anything from poverty to prosperity except by business.”
  • “If you’re going to be successful, it’s not going to come at the cost of your integrity, conscious and dignity.”
  • “The person who does business like a snake has to pay the penalty of being the snake.”
  • “Life is more than how much money you have.”
  • “Network with people in order to serve them.”
  • “Jesus was a master at working together with other people.”
  • “No one can buy into a message unless it’s marketed.”
  • “Why did Jesus choose fishermen to be their first disciples? They were networkers.”
  • “The greatest commandment is to love the lord your God with all your heart and then your neighbor as yourself.”
  • “Every person who has submitted themselves to the rule of God has entered the Kingdom of God.”
  • “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a net that was thrown into the world.”
  • “You currency does not go farther than your set of relationships. Your influence can not go further than your network.”
  • “Networking is connecting people who had something to offer with people who need things.”
  • “Any career is highly dependent on your ability to create connections.”
  • “No career could have been more in tune with who I am as a person.”
  • “I believed that God was leading me the whole way and I was always obedient to God’s purposes for me were.”

Special Requests:

Dr. Joseph Castleberry on the Defining Success Podcast with Zeb Welborn Learn to Network Like Jesus

Dr. Joseph Castleberry


Episode 21: Networking Secrets for Entrepreneurs | Esther Kiss from EstherKiss.com

Esther Kiss helps entrepreneurs build better businesses.  She considers herself to be a mentor and has a lot of advice for entrepreneurs on how they can build their business, reach more customers and make more money.  The key to getting what you want, explains Esther, is giving yourself to others.  By helping others you will receive benefits and, in turn, become successful

Esther Kiss

Esther Kiss

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Esther Kiss, from EstherKiss.com, mentors entrepreneurs.  She helps experts and service providers generate a steady flow of ideal clients and helps to convert leads more effectively than ever before.  In short, she will show you how to get more clients and make more money in your business.

Esther has an extensive background in business.  She grew up in a small family that had a lot of investments in hotels, real estate, and trading and shipping companies.  Esther lost a lot of her investments in the stock market and so she started her own business to teach others how to speak Hungarian.  She was able to package her business in a way to have only the people who are very committed and had enough time to learn Hungarian.  She was able to get them pre-paid and paying triple the market value.

She then realized that her expertise would be perfect in a business coaching context.

Esther than got a job at the Beverly Hills Lingual Institute to show that she has some credibility in the industry.  It gave her the credentials to show that she could do it.  She reached out to her circle to ask if people knew anyone who was interested in learning Hungarian and her business blossomed from there.

In the interview, Esther provides lots of valuable tips on time management for entrepreneurs.  She encourages all of you to write down what you do on a daily basis literally to the minute because in order to manage your time effectively, you need to know where you’re spending your time.  Do the highest revenue generating activities and then you will be better at time management.  You should divide your time into three categories:  flex time is devoted towards the day-to-day operations of your business, focus time is focused on long-term projects like your marketing campaigns and the third is your free time which is the rest of your life.

If you want to do a better job at networking, see who the decision makers are at a company and see who they know.  If you know someone who might be connected to someone you’re trying to get a hold of then reach out to that person and see if they can connect you.  Another great tool entrepreneurs can use when networking is to be a giver, because people will think you’re a nice guy.

Esther says there are a variety of different ways to figure out who the decision makers are and there’s a lot of different tools to figure out who those decision makers are.  Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ are great tools to figure out who the decision makers are, but you can also view the website or get access to information online about who you’re trying to reach.

Many entrepreneurs struggle because they are able to make a certain amount of income but they are never able to cross the hump to live a more comfortable lifestyle.  Esther helps entrepreneurs by delving into their business to find ways to make their business more efficient and reach out to others for a higher potential profit.

Many business owners go for low income sales and focus on volume, but Esther recommends entrepreneurs target the customers that are willing to invest more and more often.

Esther Kiss at the Emmy's

Esther Kiss at the Emmy’s

Most entrepreneurs make the mistake of trying to be like everyone else while they think they are making themself unique.  If you’re doing what everyone else is doing, you’re getting followers, but it doesn’t necessarily mean your making money.  Esther recommends having a system that works and that when you turn it on you know you’ll be able to get customers.

Esther considers herself to be a business mentor.  Coaching typically involves spending a lot of time with a person to help them come to their own conclusions.  Esther than gives entrepreneurs shortcuts to come to their own conclusions.

Esther considers herself to be very logical and analytical.  She focuses much more on results and numbers and she tries to help find her business produce results.  Esther is also very strong at connecting with others.

Willpower is an app that will not let you go onto certain websites for a particular amount of time.  These external tools can help, but it really comes to your own willpower that will determine your success.

Spend an hour a day looking for referral or promotional partners.  If you’re a marketing coach you would be interested in working with a website designer or a PR Director.

If you’re not able to say exactly what they are interested in you will not be successful in business.

Engaging Discussion Questions:

  • How important do you think giving is in business?
  • What traits do you look for in a business coach?
  • How do you network?

Links to Great Stuff:

  • EstherKiss.com – “Esther loves teaching her creative business & marketing strategies, mentoring entrepreneurs to help them get more high paying clients.”
  • Beverly Hills Lingual Institute – “The Beverly Hills Lingual Institute is your best choice for learning a language in Los Angeles and Orange County.  Offering language classes in over 25 languages with the most comprehensive schedule of classes available, we are Southern California’s Premier Language School.”

Success Quotes:

  • “Success is having the confidence and ability to building what you want from scratch.”
  • “If you come from a place of wanting to help and serve rather than selling something to them . . . you build more confidence and leads because every person will have a great experience.”
  • “Tune in to the core desire of your ideal client, pinpoint it and speak to their highest need.”
  • “Entrepreneurs are usually very excited and energetic in trying new things.”
  • “Most entrepreneurs have entrepreneurial ADD where they start a million projects and none of them get finished.”
  • “Be very clear about the results you can get for people.”

Special Requests