In his latest blog posting, our CEO ponders the behaviours most often seen in those who prosper in the Chamber network.
I know I shouldn't but I can't help but feel a pang of disappointment when I talk to a prospective or new Chamber member and the first question they ask me is "What's in it for me?" or "How can I get the most out of the Chamber?".
A great friend of the Chamber (and someone I have been fortunate to know I can pick up the phone to seeking advice from time to time) asked me a very different question the first time I met him as a new member - "What can I do to help?". This was from a former executive in a global business who now looks after an international portfolio of business interests and trains directors of public companies how to be more effective. I find myself regularly being attuned to listen out for leads for him as I'm keen to help him where I can as he helps me so much. The relationship was built up over time and is based on trust and respect, made possible by our meeting regularly at Chamber events.
This morning in Sydney, one of our mentors spoke to the guests at our Networking Breakfast about how important it's been in his career to look for opportunities to first seek to help people and then to make sure you thank those people who help you. Sounds simple doesn't it? It's no surprise that this is an individual who has built a very successful career and is highly respected within the group.
On Tuesday night I had news from a board colleague that a major international speaker had agreed to appear at our upcoming national final for the Irish Australian Business Awards. Not because they were excited about the life-changing fee on offer, simply because they thought that we were doing good, making a difference, helping people succeed and recognising success. That sounded cool, they wanted to be part of it and it all came about because of their relationship with a colleague who had helped them out in years gone by.
Then at other times I hear of folk who are struggling a bit. Progress for them in their professional life has stagnated and they are upset that joining the Chamber hasn't been an instant panacea. When we delve a little deeper the common themes show they apply for a basic membership but never attend events, engage with fellow members or take an interest in the wider activities of the group beyind their location or sector. They don't put themselves out there and look for opportunities to pay it forward and I think it's a great shame that they let some great opportunities pass them by.
We can't guarantee anyone that they will meet a mentor, a customer, a friend or a supplier through buying a ticket (or booking a place for our many "free-for-members" options) and turning up at any of our events but we can guarantee that if you don't turn up, you definitely won't meet them.