My First Year at Job Camp

Today is 10 10 10!! This kind of date doesn’t come along every year…OK, well maybe for the next few years it will. I wanted to be sure I got a post in today.


My first year at Job Camp

I was very happy and honored when Sarah Klein first asked me to get involved with Job Camp.  I really don’t work with job seekers normally. My main business is working with small business owner helping them learn the skills they need to run a small business and helping them network and build their connections. But, when it comes to making a succinct statement about who you are and what you do that matters to someone looking to hire, it’s all the same. I had the distinct pleasure to head up the Elevator Pitch/Unique Selling Proposition and Speed Networking Area.


I had a blast working with the Campers! I met so many interesting people from all different backgrounds. Some had a harder time than others when it came to saying something positive about themselves. For some job seekers, this was their first exposure to an ‘elevator pitch’ or ‘Unique Selling Proposition’. As an active Networker this is a very common practice in my daily life.


Some of the most commonly asked questions were; Why do I need this? When would I use it? It seems that for some occupations, people have never been exposed to a potential hiring manager other than in a formal interview situation. I am so accustomed to bumping into people socially or being introduced by a friend and having to rattle off my who, what, and why statement. In the business networking circles of Milwaukee, you are constantly selling yourself. You never know when someone you meet could be the perfect new client, so you have to always be ready and armed with a few versions of your pitch/USP.


It was very rewarding for me to have such sincere gratitude expressed for the help received. Volunteers mentioned to me multiple times during the day that Campers had mentioned they visited the Elevator pitch area and were very happy with the assistance they received from our volunteers. Many thanks go out to Paul Parsons (FocalPoint business Coach who trained us to craft our pitches), Chad Uebele, Dean Pearson, Alan Cufaude, Kathy Orr, Kat Miller, Natalie Hoadley, Scott Tenhagen, and Larry Bain. Most of these volunteers are either members of PRO Alliances, Students, or local Business Owners. They took time out of their busy day and time away from work to come out and make a difference!


One of my most interesting people all day was Judi. She actually found me at the Farmers Insurance booth and mentioned that another Camper had told her how happy she was with the help she had received from me. Even though we were in the process of closing that area for the day, she asked if we could spend some time going over her pitch. I am very glad we did, because I made a new connection with a wonderful lady.


It’s all about connections! While working with some of the Campers, I had a gentleman named Michael (CPA) at my table. Another gentleman named Leroy came to join us and was listening intently as I finished working with Michael. Leroy had an interesting grin which sparked my curiosity. When it was Leroy’s turn to discuss his USP, I realized why he had the grin. He also is a CPA and the two gentlemen proposed they meet in the near future to discuss the possibility of forming some sort of partnership and working independently. They both came to Job Camp looking for help with their job search, but also both had Entrepreneurial ambitions. What a great connection.


You just never know who you will meet! It always pays to network!


Karin Conway

PRO Alliance Resources, LLC

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