Image by: James Cridland
By Charles Lewis
It’s time to join the club, gentlemen. For ever and a day, people have been gathering in clubs both public and private to escape from the outside world, socialize with like-minded individuals, and to do behind-the-scenes business with people they know and trust.
It’s true – club members tend to share valuable information with one another, whether it is a swanky downtown men’s club or a monthly blogger’s meeting. It’s all about the networking, and you won’t find many better places to work that net than in the club setting.
What do you say, gents? Time to join the club? Yes, but what type?
Traditional Men’s Club
Ah yes, the men’s club, that last bastion of all things men. These pricey, elegant places to consolidate power are usually steeped in long-standing traditions, especially the one that says no girls allowed. They are also hard to beat when it comes to making friends and growing your influence. Power breeds power, and these rooms-to-grow are chock full of the most powerful men out there.
But with the changing social climate, there are fewer and fewer men-only establishments, so swing it while you can. Examples include The New York Racquet & Tennis Club in or Black Sheep Golf Club near Chicago.
Yes, most of them have sports or college themes and involve activities such as golf, swimming and tennis. Being able to play golf and tennis will only help your cause. So will a working knowledge of scotch.
Or you can join the new millennium like the rest of us and forget about the all-dudes thing. Now suddenly your selection of clubs to join is as vast as an ocean. As an alternative to those men-only sausage parties, you can try New York’s finest The University Club or a local version. They are everywhere.
For the nothing-but-business minded among you, your local Chamber of Commerce is also a good place to start as any.
Let’s get one thing straight – you can’t just walk into a private club and start making bank. It takes a lot of time to develop relationships, gain the trust of the other members and reap the rewards. It also helps if you already have some amount of success to better fit in.
Joining a social club is a long-term project for sure, but stick with it and the world is your diamond-encrusted oyster with a coat room.
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A Geek Group
Let your nerd flag fly and join a group that champions your particular interests, either business or personal. Are you a WordPress designer? There are many groups out there, meeting without you right now, waiting to give you bunches of tips and hook you up with tons of connections.
Do you set your sights on the stars? Join those planetarium people down at the big telescope – every decent-sized area has one – once a month for a covered-dish space invasion.
If you are having trouble locating a geek group specializing in your particular area of interest, try your luck using a site like TechVenue, your local paper’s community bulletin board or start your own group via Craigslist.
The Volunteer Organization
Not only are you doing good things for the community, you are also expanding your social horizons. Digging in and volunteering for an emergency aid organization, helping serve hot meals at a local homeless shelter or working as a fundraiser for a disease-fighting foundation can change your life. Feel great, make new friends and build bridges for the future.