“I’ll do it!”
Every Wednesday morning I have a networking meeting. At each meeting, there is a 5 minute space of time that’s left to continuing education. The purpose of this education slot is for the “education coordinator” to give tips and tricks for networking. Basically, his job is to help members learn how to network effectively.
Today (being Wednesday), I left my apartment to get to the meeting. The minute I walked out the door, I noticed that everything was covered in a sheet of ice. Fun…
After scraping my car, fighting the road conditions, and passing a few accidents, I finally made it.
So, the meeting starts, and a few people end up not showing up because of the ice. Definitely understandable. But, one of the members missing was the education coordinator (apparently, he couldn’t even make it out of his neighborhood).
We’re about 10 minutes in to the meeting, when the president of the group announces, “this would be the time that we have our education piece”. He was going to skip over it. Well, I decided that I would fill the role. I have been reading a ton, and had plenty of built up knowledge to pass along. I raised my hand, and said I would do it.
I riffed for 5 minutes about how business owners should specialize themselves (especially when networking). And, I told a story about a particular networking method that Tim Ferriss (author of 4-Hour Work Week) has used many times in the past.
What I spoke about is not important to this story…
However, the interesting part was what happened after I finished speaking. Members of the group were clapping and saying how much they enjoyed it. One of the members even compared me to Dale Carnegie! It was a good feeling for sure — and only slightly inflated my ego.
Here’s another interesting tidbit.
I’m the youngest person in the group by at least 10 years. But yet, these members, all significantly older than I, thought of me as an authority voice in the topic of networking. And it was simply because I stood up, pulled out a couple stories that I had read, and gave some tips from my own background.
It just goes to show that you, yes you, can be a leader — an authority — at any age. Don’t think that just because you’re younger than somebody means that they can’t think of you as a leader.
If you can speak influentially, network effectively, and use stories as a teaching mechanism, you can create your own authority. If you think of yourself as a leader, and can back it up with action, then age is insignificant.
Be a leader by making yourself a leader.
Until next time,