By Kenneth Hitchner
Back in the mid-1980s, one of my relatives won the state lottery. She quickly went from being another schoolteacher to a multi-millionaire.
But that wasn’t the only strange thing that happened. People started to come out of the woodwork to befriend her. After all, everybody loves a winner.
Since then, I have also seen this phenomenon in reverse. I have watched friends and acquaintances make targeted connections with more and more people. And, I have watched their quality of life improve.
So what does this all mean? Well, here is my non-scientific equation: Relationships=Money. In fact, these two things seem to attract each other. If you need more money, or a job, then all you need is more relationships.
I realize that this equation may not be groundbreaking. Most people in transition know that there is an 85 percent chance that they will land their next job through networking. And, once you are unemployed for more than six months, that number drifts closer to 100 percent.
However, I believe this simple notion needs to be underscored – and embraced by PSGCNJ.
In the last three months, we have made a collective decision to uphold the spirit of PSGCNJ and make it better. Now that we know who and what we are, we must go forward and share the good news – with people who we can help and with people who can help us.
Here is a glimpse into the next three months:
Build our Brand: PSGCNJ is a special community that helps, supports, fights and advocates for other members within the community. We are not a support group, although we offer a lot of it. We are not a networking group, although we provide plenty of it. The main difference between us and other groups is that we put our people back to work. Why? Because the easiest way to find another job is to already have one. The dirty truth is that employers are uncomfortable hiring unemployed people because they typically lack purpose, structure and confidence. But PSGCNJ members don’t have to worry about that because our community gives back those elements to our members once they join and contribute to one our committees. This is a compelling story that must continue. It will yield many more relationships.
Tell the World: Today, our community has a lot to talk about. We have made a conscious decision to take charge of our own future; we have accepted the fact that we will shape our own destiny. In short, we are changing lives for the better.
But we must promise never to quit on ourselves – or this community. In part, that means doing our part to spread the word to prospective members, employers and recruiters. (If you have not received the official PSGCNJ flyer for employers and new members, please email me at Kenneth.Hitchner@gmail.com; we need every member to tell the world.)
Bet on Ourselves: While we continue to use social media, libraries and word-of-mouth channels to promote our brand, we will need to make investments to promote our community. We need to turn this organization into a nonprofit, which will legitimize our cause and encourage others to help us. We need liability insurance so our partners won’t bear the risk. And we need to purchase marketing materials, such as brochures and business cards, which will present us in a professional manner.
Financially, we need to start investing in ourselves. Our first fundraiser will be the well-known Entertainment coupon books that will allow you to save money, while investing in the future of PSGCNJ. We will sell each book at a discounted $30. Go to http://psgcnj.org/entertainmentbook.html and either click on the coupon book image or the link below the image that will take you to the Entertainment Book order page set up specifically for our PSGCNJ Fundraiser. Scroll down to “New Jersey” and purchase the book online that fits your geographic area. (FYI: The Middlesex/Central Jersey edition covers Middlesex, Somerset, Hunterdon and Southern Union counties.)
As always, help the PSGCNJ community help you!
PSGCNJ Executive Director
By Kenneth Hitchner