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Networking Success Story: Stephen Bailey

June 17, 2010 1 comment

Stephen Bailey is finishing up his senior year of high school and will be attending Syracuse University in the fall. Stephen and I recently got in touch via Facebook and we soon found out we were going to be writing for the same site. Boston Sports Then and Now.

Here is Stephen’s success story (how networking helped him).

Last summer, I interned in the Sports Publicity department at Yale University. I discovered the position through a classmate who had worked there the year earlier. Although this may not be the networking most think of (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.), it is just as valuable. Expanding your personal web of connections is something an industry professional never stops doing.

This April, I started BBSB (Baileys Boston Sports Blog) as a hobby.  Towards the end of the month, I decided to send one of my articles to the person who runs Celtics Life, a very popular Celtics blog. He told me he liked what he saw and gave me his contact information. After a quick chat, it was a done deal. Simple as that.

A couple weeks ago, I sent one of my recent Red Sox articles to Joe Gill, head of Boston Sports Then and Now after he posted up a comment on LinkedIn that he was looking for bloggers. Again, he told me he was impressed and took me aboard. Now I have hundreds, or even thousands of people reading my articles, as opposed to the handful I would have had on my site. The exposure will surely help me become a better writer and opens up opportunities for me in the future.

The point is, all it takes is a couple clicks. Be outgoing, friendly, and confident. Make connections, and don’t be afraid to put yourself out there.

Do you have a networking success story? How did social networking or networking events contribute to your career? If you have some, leave them in the comments section or send me an email (you can find that in the contact me section).

Want to do some networking?

Connect with me on LinkedIn: Dan Sullivan

Join my Sport Management Networking Group on LinkedIn

A personal networking success story: Round 2

A few months back, I published a post about how I was able to secure a job with Kraft Sports Group through networking. You can read that post here. Well I have used social media to my advantage again and have a new networking success story.

After starting this blog, I decided it would be important to link it with my twitter account (@DanSullivanSM). I started to follow someone with the twitter handle @bosprtsthennow. After we exchanged tweets (retweeting each other and engaging in light twitter conversation), he sent me a message, asking if I was interested in attending his networking event, Blogapalooza. I looked into it more and found it very interesting, so I started to talk to him on facebook. It turned out his name is Joe Gill, the owner of Boston Sports Then and Now.

As we began to chat about the event on Facebook, I started to speak to him about my site. After a few months, the event rolled around and I attended. I was able to speak briefly with Joe at the event and we kept in touch afterwards. We continued to speak via Twitter and Facebook, then eventually LinkedIn.

One day, I asked Joe if he could give me some advice on my site. He was more than happy to help me out and which I was very appreciative of. Joe liked what he saw on my site and soon thereafter, he asked me if I wanted to write him a sports business column for his site. I jumped at the opportunity and I am now a contributing writer at Boston Sports Then and Now.

My first post was published yesterday (on the national site: Sports then and Now). You can read my article: “USA Starts Well at the FIFA World Cup.”

The bottom line here is that networking is so easy to do. It is as easy as engaging in conversation with people through various means of social networking. Just start some conversations and see where they will lead!

Recommended readings for sport management and business professionals

Here are a few readings I would recommend. Some of these I have read in school and others I have read in my free time, but regardless, they are all useful resources and can teach you valuable lessons that can be applied to your career.

  • The Game Starts Here – Lewis Howes  (“How to take your career to the next level in the sports industry.” I couldn’t find a link for this, but the book is contributed to by the authors at SportsNetworker so you can check that site out as well)
  • Linked Working – Lewis Howes (This book is all about using LinkedIn to further your career. I threw this one in there because I cannot stress enough how important being on LinkedIn is for any professional, regardless of their field)
  • Good to Great – Jim Collins (Can help companies that are already in existence improve their practices, along with help set up companies for success)
  • Crush It! – Gary Vaynerchuk (Great all-around book, written about wine production, yet contains so many direct connections to the professional world. Useful for improving personal practices and learning to self-promote and further your business)

Enjoy! If you have any suggested readings, leave them in the comments section. Hope you find these useful!