When I think of a watering hole, I picture a bunch of cows, perfect for an ad for Chick-Fil-A, but not where I’d want to meet with fascinating friends. But, Pamela Slim author of Body of Work, uses the term “watering holes” to represent networking groups. She advocates that you (the Avatar) meet your colleagues and friends in your network (the Ecosystem), by calling the places we meet our “watering holes.”
This is the third of a three part series, defining new terms for change.
Seems rather silly to me, but new packaging for old terms could push people harder to move forward with life changes. Identifying your strengths in an Avatar, making a list of the people who can help you with your job search (your Ecosystem) creates momentum. If you are looking for a new spouse, you may join a ski club or singles organization. If you have an idea for a start-up, you could mingle with a Meet-Up, like “Making Business Happen for Female Entrepreneurs or maybe attend a Women in Technology meeting. If you are an engineer, your professional association is a must. The Chamber of Commerce, the Rotary Club, Toastmasters, American Heart Association…all sensible “watering holes.”
Volunteer “Watering Holes”
I loved the volunteering I did at the JOB Group at Custer Road United Methodist Church. The happiness and celebration when someone landed a new job brought great joy into my life. When we moved to Sachse, I knew I’d need to find a new “watering hole.” Now my favorite place to volunteer is the library. To be a good writer, I need to read and meet other authors. I started a writers group and became a “Friend of the Library.” I’m coordinating an event to raise money for e-books. I’m meeting fascinating people and my writing is improving. A writer friend told me, she sees my improvement. Can you imagine how elated I am with her comment?
Traditional “Watering Holes”
You never know where you will find people to help you with dilemmas and crises. Maybe it will be at the Fish Shack in Plano, Texas or maybe it will be a fancy bar near the Galleria in Dallas. Perhaps your hobby will take you to a convention or trade show, an excellent place to rub shoulders within your ecosystem.
We all resist change, especially if it’s unexpected, but change usually doesn’t happen without the proper recipe. Kick fear into the cow barn. You can’t sit behind your computer, expecting a cow poke at your door. You need to make an effort to stretch by using your Avatar, your Ecosystem and your “Watering Holes.”
These terms may not be trending but if they do, you’ll be a few steps ahead in understanding their meaning. Now MOOO-VE on!