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J. Kelly Hoey - Build Your Dream Network

Don’t show-up just to ask for money

This networking rant aka pro-tip, is brought to you by, this email:

Donate today and transform entrepreneurship tomorrow.

Before 2023 ends, support [name of organization]’s work to catalyze economic growth for X, Y and Z communities through women entrepreneurs. When you donate, you provide pathways to wealth creation for innovative women of X, Y, Z founders. We serve thousands of women founders each year through our award-winning programs, groundbreaking research, and empowering community initiatives. Every dollar you donate celebrates women of X, Y, Z by helping us reach our fundraising goal to create a more equitable world.

Thank You,

[name of organization]
[street address of organization]

Oh, where the F to start…other than by stating the obvious: organizations can be networking fuckwits too (which should make you feel better, if at present, you feel inadequate at this necessary activity we refer to as “networking”).

But let’s break down the “donate today” organization’s pretty massive networking failure:

  1. This was the only communication I received from them in 2023 – and clearly, they knew where to find me or find my email, the ask to donate was sent to my email. There was no salutation.
  2. Now, who exactly did the organization serve in 2023 and precisely, how?
  3. What recent awards and accolades did the organization receive? I am aware of what has been lauded on them in the past, but past performance isn’t necessarily indicative of continued committed performance. So what gives?
  4. Research. I am aware of one incredible report which was published….about a decade ago! Has the organization done something groundbreaking, perhaps, new or even updated research?
  5. How are the community initiatives different from the “award winning programs”? Am I just a confused potential donor, or did I miss an initiative? Oh, wait, I didn’t hear from this organization until December f’g 31st, so there is that.
  6. Then the signature line…no person. A faceless organization that I’m supposed to feel committed to…yeah, not. so. much.

My pro-tip bottom line:

  • Don’t show up ONLY when you need something.
  • Bring people on your journey by communicating regularly – even if you don’t think you have much new news to share.
  • Ask for feedback and advice, as that may get you $$$ (versus, what’s happened here, an ask for $$$ and they get a F’g rant).
J. Kelly Hoey

Networking Expert + Career Transformation Coach + Author + Speaker, Kelly Hoey looks at "networking" through a new, modern, fresh lens, offering you (who are pursuing and perhaps struggling with your big ambitions), advice on how to connect for success in a hyper-connected world that is woefully short in its attention span. Her network-building advice is relatable, instilling confidence with actionable insights and practical information. www.jkelyhoey.co