wp_logo1Hello everyone! Well, I didn’t make it to the Black Enterprise Women of Power Summit in Orlando, FL this year. I am so upset. I caught the flu so I couldn’t go. I had it all planned out. I would stay at my Mom’s (free room & board!), meet some of the ladies outside of the Summit for drinks or dinner, and network my butt off! I had the sessions I wanted to attend highlighted and was ready with my business cards. I even ordered some extra copies of my book- just in case. Needless to say, I was disappointed when I realized I would not be attending. *sigh* Yes, I’m whining.

Well, a lovely friend of mine, Michelle Greene, a Director of Business Infrastructure, who I met at last year’s Summit, called me and told me to get well and stay in bed. We both wished we could get together and turn that event out, but I was too sick to make it. Michelle did something that was even better than me being there. This dear woman talked me up to anyone who would listen. You see, I advised Michelle to get some Resume Cards a few weeks ago as part of her self marketing efforts. She had some made and bought them with her to the Summit. Everyone she gave them to complimented her on a genius idea. She promptly told them that I was the one who advised her to get them AND she told them about my book. Amongst them was B. E. Editorial Director Sonia Allyene- I’m really sorry I missed her!

And as if that wasn’t enough, Michelle stood in line after a session with Carla Harris- a managing director in global capital markets at Morgan Stanley- to get an autographed copy of her new book Expect to Win: Proven Strategies for Success from a Wall Street Vet just for me. When she called me to say she had a surprise for me, I had no idea. I am so touched that she did that for me. The power of networking! I am going to be sure to send Ms. Harris a note of thanks, and I owe Michelle a dinner or something for looking out for me like she did. I am truly blessed.

Another example of my brand transcending myself is I received a call from a woman who is doing research for an article on women entrepreneurs. She left a voice message for me and in it she stated that in talking with other women, my name came up quite a few times as a person to know. She took that as her hint to look me up! I have no voice right now, but I will call her back as soon as I can speak again. I don’t know which women spoke so highly of me but I am so grateful to them for respecting me and thinking so highly enough of me to make the referral.

So see, your brand really does represent you when you aren’t there. It is important that you continue to represent yourself in the highest integrity and respect. People talk, and you want them to always speak well of you. It’s the highest form of flattery and confirmation when people share your name. Don’t disappoint them.

Til next time.

Adrienne Graham