You’re visibly sweaty. You’re slurping your drink a little too fast. You’re sucking in your stomach so your blazer stays buttoned. Where are you? A networking event, of course! As you make the rounds, introducing yourself to new faces who are already writing you off, you vow to yourself that you’re done with these events. Have you been in this exasperating situation before? Today, we say no more! Unbutton your blazer and cool down. We’re talking about why professional women deserve more than a couple cubes of cheese and a name tag.
WOMEN IN NUMBERS: 2.0
In 2015, a study conducted by a leading graduate business school revealed women advance in our careers a bit differently than men. While many guys are schmoozing at trade shows, women often have difficulty with this approach. Instead, women choose to build our own networking groups, typically comprised of fellow women who are eager to embrace the spirit of women’s empowerment and lift each other up. This concept has been described as “sisterhood 2.0.” In such female-focused communities, career gals are less interested in rubbing elbows with anyone and everyone, and more attracted to making real connections.
WOMAN TO WATCH: Gina Bianchini, Founder and CEO of Mighty Networks
Many women have a hard time creating that sisterhood 2.0. They’re at the beginning of their careers, oftentimes in new cities. Or they’re bogged down with the day-to-day struggles of simply making it, so building a supportive professional network seems pretty farfetched. Thankfully, today’s Woman to Watch, Gina Bianchini, is here to help. A longtime entrepreneur and an expert communicator, Gina is making it easier for women at all stages of their careers to connect and thrive through her newest venture, Mighty Networks, which brings traditional business networking into the 21st century.
The fastest way to create a community-powered brand, the Mighty Networks platform is free for individuals. Users can create, launch and control their Mighty Network, inviting others who share their deep interests, or join an already existing network, from those focused on career, health, gender, entrepreneurship and more. As an owner of a Mighty Network, you’ll receive proprietary algorithms and data on the topics that are resonating with members.
The Mighty Networks app is visually engaging and offers both virtual and in-person connections. You can view group members’ profiles but can also get introduced to those who are near you. The growth is endless when it comes to building your network on Mighty Networks. Some describe it as the better, more efficient iteration of Facebook groups.
Gina definitely sees the value in creating community. As she likes to say, her first community group was her family. Later, she thrived in school groups, church groups and sports groups. And after the sudden, tragic death of her father, it was her local community that stepped up and provided support—an act that enlightened Gina to the true power of small communities.
She’s since had an emphasis in her career on the idea that bringing people together who have the same interests can provide each group member with invaluable connections, resources and support. Prior to founding Mighty Networks, Gina tapped into her entrepreneurial side, co-founding creative-media services company Harmonic Communications, as well as another social-network platform, Ning, in the early 2000s.
As a consummate go-getter, Gina notes that if she has a superpower, it’s being able to push each day for a future she passionately believes in, even when she experienced failure the day before. It’s all part of her belief that failure, though seemingly debilitating at the time, is simply a stepping stone on the way to success.
QUITE THE QUOTE
Let’s sign off today with another great piece of advice from Gina Bianchini:
“If you’re not putting yourself in a situation that has some risks associated with it, you’re probably not going to realize your full potential.”
This is Melinda Garvey signing off until next time. Remember, ladies, empowered women empower other women. Share On the Dot so more women can have a voice. Thanks for getting ready with us.