COLLEEN CLARKE – Networking- Elevator Pitch

Ever wonder how to network and build professional relationships that count?
Or how to have a great elevator pitch and a successful advice call? Our guest Colleen Clarke has the answers to all those questions and so much more.

Weather you work in a corporation or an entrepreneur you will want to hear Colleen’s tips, success stories and processes.  

BIO: COLLEEN CLARKE is a highly recognized career specialist, corporate trainer, and public speaker in the areas of career management and transition, communication and networking. For the past 20+ years she has motivated, inspired and counseled thousands of groups and individuals to maximize their career potential. Colleen is also a certified Workplace Coach with the Adler Institute. She is author of “Networking How To Build Relationships That Count” and “How To Get a Job and Keep It” and co-author of “The Power of Mentorship: The Mastermind Group”.

Hear how Colleen started her business

4:19 – Listen to what motivated Colleen to start her own business.  How after 16 jobs she knew what she wanted to do. Hear how she started a networking group which morphed into a career counselling business and being a well sought-after speaker.

10:43- Colleen mentions that networking is not just about who you know but who knows you.

Networking Type Defined

11:35- Discussion on networking and defining what kind of networking we are discussing.
Job search
Changing your career
Transition in your life
Starting your own business

Colleen explains the importance of face to face networking and building a relationship. Finding the right people to network with has a much to do with what you want to do and be. Tips on how to search for people that do what your want to do and have had a similar path so you will get more answers.

More tips on networking

13:55 – More tips on networking. One of the most important aspects of networking, is not to think the person you are speaking to is going to be able to offer you a position. That is not why you are networking. You want to let people know what you are looking for, so you have another set of ears and eyes looking for you and to build a data resource base.

14:22 – Suggestions on how to manage your data resource base on how to use it.

Data Resource Management

15:28 – Furthermore hear Colleen talk about how important it is to maintain those relationships in your data resource base and how to do that effectively. A couple of suggestions;
1. Group email
2. Post on linked in and content suggestions.

Where to go to network

16:31 – Conversation about fears of networking. Tips on where to go to network.

Associations in your own industry
Join groups, example Company of Women
Going to meeting
Sitting on committees
Greeter at events
Take registration at a conference and golf tournaments
Volunteering outside of your industry.

19:41- How to be more visible. It takes time to be more visible, but you don’t have to do it every day.  People should say you are everywhere, and you are easy to find.

21:29 – Networking is work, it is a science, and art, you must like people. Even if an introvert you can be effective in networking. A resource Colleen suggests is Carole Cameron’s book called Splash, An Introvert’s Guide to Being Seen, Heard and Remembered.

Colleen shares an example of how she helped a client that was introverted.

23:46- Great tips from Colleen on ways to help people remember you. If you are not appearing, then you are disappearing.

25:27 – Colleen describing the importance of the 3-minute presentation also know as an elevator pitch. How it should be succinct in what you do and what you are looking for. Plus, asking how I can help you and what can I do for you.

27:48- Colleen shares her strategy/process she teaches to have a good elevator pitch and gives us examples.

  1. start with a result – tag line
  2. now they are hooked in you can explain what it means, define explicitly what you do so people can get a visual picture. They must be able to image what you do.

33:36- Colleen shares another technique and more examples.

36:31- Penny asks Colleen what she would say to someone that just started working in a big corporation and how they should start networking.
Hear all the great tips that would apply to anyone working in a big corporation. Plus, building your brand and how to raise awareness what you do.

42:41- More suggestions on how to build your brand and documenting your wins on twitter and or on linked. It’s telling not selling. It’s not boasting, it’s about telling them about it. Talking about successes it important.

45:49 – Networking is a tool. It must be honed so you can use it on a on going basis. If you don’t have relationships, then you don’t have a business.

46:47- Big challenge is to get people to return your calls or connect with you. Colleen shares a story on this topic.

48:56 – Networking and collaboration discussion.

51:04 – Penny asks Colleen if there is a chapter in her book that she would like to highlight. Colleen says that she is huge advocate of the advice call. It is a 30-minute meeting with people that will help move you forward and are now where you want to be. Colleen explains how this process works and Chapter 7 lays out the technique, worksheets and success stories.

55:54 – This is where Colleen shares her message to all entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs.

How to connect with Colleen:



Colleen’s Books:

Networking: How to Build Relationships That Count,” removes the fear that many people have about reaching out and making connections, often with perfect strangers in strange environments. It is a “how to book”: how to engage people, what to say to set up advice call meetings, scripts to recite when at functions or in networking meetings, the importance of internal networking and increasing one’s visibility.

networking by colleen clarke


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Social Media Marketing

When the keynote speaker at a communication conference tells you he has assisted 7000 companies, in over 20 years, increase their “social mention” on the internet, you sit up and listen, pull out a pen, yes a pen, and start taking copious notes.

This presentation was presented at the National Communication Coaches Association conference at Toronto City Hall Wednesday, April 3, 2019. The presentation was to educate mostly consultants and business owners on how to grow their business through the effective use of social media. Read and learn!

@Slava Apel, from says to be most effective in social media you have to EARN attention, you have to provide and share useful content on a regular basis. 92% of the brands Slava works with see results through social media.

Addicts of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc are said to be on “behavioral cocaine.” 48% of all “addicts”, click on FB/ Twitter/ LI/Instagram as soon as they wake up in the morning, or even in the middle of the night. Are you kidding me? I have to feed my cat first!

Apparently these addicts suffer from FOMO, The Fear of Missing Out, in other words, what happened while I was away? OH MY GOD, NOTHING? I better check again!

The best time to post on LinkedIn is at 9AM, noon and 5PM, as this is when people check the site the most. FB and Twitter have their preferred times as well, so as to be part of the stream.

How Do You Create Traffic

Slava said the first considerations are:

  1. Authority – Slava has 50 profiles running on the internet and he keeps an Excel spreadsheet of when he posts, what he posted and when to post next. Are you kidding me? What is an Excel spreadsheet?
  2. Influencer – this is where you piggy back on important people or pools of people, clubs, webs of people, FB promos, people with connections, Hubs of people. Exhibit something popular, something trending.
  3. #hashtagging – started with Twitter and is the “focus topic” being discussed such as #socialmedia, #communicationstrategies. This # categorizes and classifies information used as search terms.
  4. Virality – going viral, posting on LinkedIn for all to see or promote, like a group of us did as we were sitting in Slava’s presentation, and fueling the message to our networks and then our networks promoting to their networks, and so on… as we all got to see each other and connect somewhat.

There are 500 social media platforms, participate only where your customers are. 

Social media Best Practices

  1. Use strong, useful relevant content. Don’t gather other peoples’ stuff, create your own material, strive to be unique and rare.
  2. Have frequent interaction with others.
  3. Pay attention to norms and culture of each platform.
  4. Create a social media policy for your organization.

Miscellaneous Bits of Information

  1. Hootsuite software can manage five profiles, for FREE, to keep track of all your profiles.
  2. Create a twitter hashtag that is a three syllable word at the most. My Twitter account is @cclarketrainer
  3. Facebook has 20X more traffic than Twitter.
  4. Twitter is the easiest to use, it is a great place to get started in social media for business.
  5. Make a video and put it on YouTube.

I am going to start using hashtags and @ symbols more in my online correspondence and see if it can become more second nature to me than it is now. I will start by thanking @SlavaApel for his excellent, insightful, educational presentation at #NCCA2019.

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Five Tips and Plus Some For Job Seekers

Marc Belaiche, President and Owner of shared these five tips with the Ontario Association of Career Management members and guests at last weeks dinner meeting.

  1. Prepare, prepare and prepare for interviews. Interviewers are getting more savvy in their interviewing techniques. It can cost a company at least the equivalent of one years salary to hire for a new position so being able to tell a hiring manager what you are going to do for them is more important than anything else you can tell a potential employer.
  2. Avoid doing things recruiters don’t like. Show up on time, know your resume inside out and backwards, know your salary expectation and indicate whether you are relocatable. Dress for the position or one level above, know your SAR stories and give quantitative results where possible.
  3. Show up. Even if you have decided the position isn’t for you, go for the practice or minimally, call to cancel.
  4. Know what jobs are in demand and who has the leverage. Thinking that you could do the job isn’t the same as having done the job, apply for jobs that you have experience in. Before you attend an interview ask who will be doing the interview, their names and titles and how long the interview will be.
  5. Learn how to search for jobs on line, use social media to find job opportunities. Did you know that Kijiji and Craig’s List have job postings? Have a highly professional Linkedin profile and learn how to use LI to uncover job postings.

Marc also shared that reference checks are not as prevalent today as credit and criminal checks. Know your credit rating, it is yours for the asking.

You may not be asked how much you earned in your last job, which is irrelevant to any new position, but what you are looking to earn. Be sure to know the industry standard for your qualifications, education level, experience, skills and potential.

At the end of the day, interviewers want their candidates to be: courteous, prepared and responsive. Evaluate yourself in these three areas to ensure you are a 10 out of 10 in each category.

Colleen Clarke

February 28, 2019

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13 Trends for Employers

Published on February 24, 2019 on Colleen’s linkedin

The world of work and of job search has shifted and redefined itself substantially in the last ten years. These are issues that employers face in finding and keeping an inspired, productive employee base in these ever changing times.

1.   Truth be told, it is getting more and more difficult to find the best candidates for many jobs in varied sectors of business. This is the #1 issue for recruiters right now.

2.   There has been an increase in multiple and counter offers. For highly employable individuals often in newly created positions and with high traffic, people are receiving two or three offers at a time.

3.   Employers are moving more quickly to the interview stage to find the right candidate. You snooze you lose, so set the interview, make a decision and get the best candidate.

4.   HR professionals and hiring managers are paying attention to resumes they might have disregarded in the past. There are less applicants per posted position so there are less resumes in piles B & C and more being considered in pile A.

5.   The trend is to make it easier to apply to positions on line. 50% of candidates drop out from applying to a position if there are too many steps in the application process.

6.   Social media is still not being used to recruit by many organizations. It is still important to have a stellar Linkedin profile, but don’t count on that as your only means of visibility.

7.   Employers are using varied means of recruiting technology including:

–       Video interviewing

–       Xref Reference Checking

–       AI, Artificial Intelligence. Robot Vera is a Russian computerized interviewer who can interview up to 1500 people a day. 200 companies in England and Russia are using AI for interviewing for repetitive jobs –  and she records the answers.

–       Facial recognition technology. By reading your facial muscle movement this technology registers how interested you are in the job being interviewed for.

8.   85% of job applicants lie on their resume. This astounded me. There are seven types of checks a recruiter can use to validate a candidate’s resume so don’t take applicants at face value, do your due diligence and check out all potential new hires.

9.   Give people their 10 out of 10 jobs. In that only 13% of employees are passionate about their job, it is so important to try a rate a candidate’s opinion on how they measure or value their job.

10. Consider alternatives to filling empty positions. Such as: internal promotions, transfers and reallocating work.

11. Don’t fear Gen Z and millennials. There are 8.4M Gen Z’s in Canada, people under 24, and they are entering the workforce as you read this. (more on Gen Z’s in another article)

12. The “Ghosting” Phenomenon: Why Candidates Don’t Show Up for Interviews or Start the Jobs They Are Offered. Employers are combatting this trend by:

·      Arranging to speak live on Skype or Facetime

·      Listening to them tone of voice for how interested the candidate is in the position

·      Asking if they have other offers

·      Asking for their word to show up for the interview, “Do you promise?”

·      Reminding them they have signed a legally binding contract

13.Employees don’t really care about cool office perks, what really matters is that 44% of professionals said benefits like health coverage and paid time off will likely keep them at their current company for 5+ years. More than half of professionals are most proud of the work life balance and flexibility at their company. 70% of employees will not work at an organization with a bad culture.

Colleen Clarke

Career Specialist and Corporate Trainer

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Thinking about a job change?: Confront ageism, turn experience to your advantage

By Colleen Clarke

Administrative Assistants’s Update, Professional Development for Canada’s Office Support Staff: September 2018

You have been through every conceivable business process change over the last 40 or so years.

You are flexible, adaptable, communicate well, can book travel arrangements as well as any travel agent, edit reports almost as well as a journalism graduate, and take care of aging parents.

You are an experienced worker.

With people reaching management status younger than ever before, work seekers over 50 can find themselves being interviewed by managers in their children’s age group. This can be uncomfortable for both parties and it does not always fare well for the experienced candidate.

Recently there has been…

Read more…

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