5 Tips For Networking At Social Events

By Randy Wooden, Director, Professional Center by Goodwill Industries of Northwest North Carolina

Networking and growing your social network can help your chances of being hired, but I hear a few common challenges people have in social settings. Today, let’s explore five tips for making the most of professional and social networking events, including interactions with friends and your faith or civic organizations. People tend to hire and do business with those they know, like and trust. As they say, it’s both what you know and who you know.

Tip #1. Just do it. For some, meeting new people might feel as uncomfortable as public speaking or going to the dentist. It is okay to be nervous; remember: what is the worst that could happen? We all have things we would prefer to avoid but know we need to do them if we are to achieve certain outcomes. Go for it! The more you network, the more relaxed and confident you will become.

Tip #2. Ask someone you know to introduce you to people they know. Whether or not you are shy, it’s important to speak with people you don’tknow to help grow your network of connections.

Tip #3. Keep conversations positive, light and brief. You do not need to give them your life story. Ask open-ended questions. “What do you do?” “What got you into that line of work?”  “What are your hobbies?”

When they ask you similar questions, avoid asking for a job. Instead, share some details about the work you would like to do and ask with whom they might suggest you speak about that sort of work.

Tip #4. Ask for their business card so you can follow up on the event. You can send them a brief email referencing some element of the conversation and about how you enjoyed meeting them. If you have a LinkedIn profile, ask send a connection request and work toward sustaining contact beyond that initial meeting.

Tip #5. Have fun! With these tips, you will succeed and build confidence to in growing your network. Good luck!

Festival Style with Goodwill®

By Julia Marchand

On hot summer days, festival style prevails! That’s because the trend itself was inspired by long days in the sun that necessitated light layers and wide brimmed hats to keep shady and comfortable. Whether you’re actually attending an outdoor concert series this year or just trying to stay cool while looking cool, hop on the boho bandwagon to seamlessly blend summer attire in with summer adventures. Here’s how…

Image via MarandaVandergriff.com

High waists, light denim, and sunnies are all staples in festival style, but how exactly can we incorporate them into our wardrobe without seeming drab or outdated? This festival guide from blogger Maranda Vandergriff is a fantastic place to start! She’s got some great ideas – like wearing this button up dress she found at Goodwill as a duster – and seriously practical advice. One of the best suggestions she has is to search for vintage items in thrift stores. These unique pieces will completely embrace the style and may have actually attended a festival or two before you were even around (Woodstock, anyone?). Check out her post for more inspo!

Image via Pinterest.com/sfgoodwill

Make sure you’ve also got some great accessories ready to round out your look. As with so many different styles, jewelry can make or break it. To channel the haute hippie inside of you, drape on lots of jewelry – necklaces, rings, bracelets, the works! Look for stone and crystal jewelry under the counter of your local Goodwill store or check out Goodwill Industries of San Francisco, San Mateo and Marin Counties‘ (CA) jewelry pinboard for inspiration. This ring, for example, would be the perfect addition and I love its great price tag, too!

Image via Instagram.com/jpenningroth

After festival season has come to a close and fall creeps in, reminders of your summertime adventures will be a welcomed sight. Since festival fashion always embraces bold patterns inspired by cultures around the world, an excellent way to bring this aesthetic into your home is with a geometric woven tapestry. This one was snagged by Jen at a Morgan Memorial Goodwill Industries (Boston) store and it perfectly captures that boho vibe we are paying homage to today. If you’re not lucky enough to find a similar weaving in your local thrift store, maybe you are brave enough to try making one yourself! There are always skeins and skeins of yarn on the shelves when I browse Goodwill and with a little time and creativity, those could easily become customized wall hangings!

I love how so many of the style elements described here can be paired with more conventional clothing pieces to remain a little more neutral, but when donned together, they create an outlandishly fun boho look. Another truly wonderful thing about shopping at Goodwill for your warm weather attire is that through its entrepreneurial business model of collecting and selling donated goods, Goodwill helps communities extend the life of usable items in environmentally sound ways, and prevents items from piling up in local landfills. Think of shopping at your local Goodwill as a way for you to give back to the earth that has provided the ideal summer weather for your festival enjoyment!

Job Center Representative Spotlight, Eduardo

Eduardo works diligently in the Job Center each day to help individuals who need assistance with a resume, cover letter, or finding and applying for a job.

“I like that the Goodwill allows me to impact people’s lives in a positive way,” Eduardo passionately states.

Stop in and say hello to Eduardo in our Sioux Falls Job Center located at
3400 S. Norton Avenue Sioux Falls, SD. The hours of the Job Center are
Monday-Thursday from 9:00am to 5:00pm and Friday from 9:00am to 12:00pm.

Hit the Beach with Iconic Thrift Finds

By Julia Marchand

Throughout the year, I look forward to summertime. Not only for the obvious reasons: the warmth, the sun and the generally leisurely attitude that many people adopt, but also because summer brings trips to the ocean. I realize, of course, that we could go to the ocean any day, but what is the fun in going when it’s cold out? It’s summer now, so the time has come for this girl to plan a trip to the seaside!

Image via Dina Days

If you ask me, maxi dresses were made for just such a trip. They’re flowy so they’re comfortable for a car ride (we usually make the drive to Ogunquit, Maine which is almost two hours away), they’re light to keep things cool in the sun, and they’re long so everything stays PG even when a strong ocean breeze blows. On my upcoming trip, I’m likely to wear an outfit very similar to this one styled by blogger Dina of Dina’s Days. It goes perfectly with a bright jacket, which is necessary on any Northern Atlantic shore, just in case the clouds roll in. By the way, can you believe that this entire look was thrifted? The dress was only $1.50 at Dina’s local Goodwill! I love that style is so accessible through Goodwill stores.

Image via Seattle Goodwill

Speaking of style, these fab friends from Seattle Goodwill are killing it in their vintage swimsuits! The collection dates from the 1860s through the 1980s with immaculately preserved clothing and accessories for every occasion. This group would definitely catch my eye strolling along the beach together! Just imagine how many wonderful seaside memories were made in those suits over the years. For more photos, click through to their blog post!

Image via Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin and Metropolitan Chicago

Can’t make it to the ocean right now? You can still pretend by decking out that dining area with a maritime feel. Merri from Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin and Metropolitan Chicago swept me away with this gorgeous display. My favorite part is the rope used for napkin holders. It’s such a simple idea and easy to execute, but it really captures that nautical flair. Merri has lots of great tips on how to assemble your own beachy tablescape (I mean, who’d have thought of turning a bath loofa into aquatic-looking netting?), so make sure you stop by their blog for more!

Do you have any plans to head to the seaside this summer? Make sure you stop by any Goodwill stores you see on the way! Your support will help Goodwill to continue doing its part in preserving our planet – its oceans included – by serving as sustainability innovators. This is done by harnessing renewable energy, including installing solar panels on Goodwill roofs to becoming LEED certified. Let’s all contribute to the health of the planet so future generations can wear our swimsuits to the beach as part of their vintage collection!

Integrated Day Services Spotlight

Integrated Day Services builds independence and improve quality of life for individuals. They participate in many community activities and are focused on enhancing the lives of special needs adults and their families. Trained, caring staff use the resources available to help the participants with their goals in a safe, fun environment where they are treated like family. 

The activities that Integrated Day Services have recently participated in include: volunteering for the 2019 Litter Dash, Support Siouxland Soldiers, visiting the Orange City Tulip Festival, and sightseeing at Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center.

Interested in helping support Integrated Day Services?  

Integrated Day Services is always looking for free or low-cost activities to participate in the community. If you have suggestions for activities or would like to make a monetary (tax deductible) donation for Integrated Day Services to participate in more activities, contact Vickie at 712-293-1488.

If you would like to donate supplies, Integrated Day Services needs: books, adult coloring books, canvases, paint, colored pencils, DIY craft boxes, and board games.