Weeknote 12: Networking or not

Two dogs outside a pollling station.

My sister’s dogs doing the #dogsatpollingstations pose.

This week’s been pretty productive as I’m approaching the deadlines for two web content projects I’ve been working on for a while. But I managed to find time to attend the Creative Meetup at Howbery Park near Wallingford. It’s one of my favourite networking groups because it doesn’t feel like networking: it’s small business owners and sole traders who work in creative fields getting together as friends to share ideas, experience and advice. And, interestingly, I heard several people that morning use the phrase ‘I don’t like networking.’

(It’s also a treat to come back to Howbery Park, where I used to work, with its riverside location and beautiful grounds.)

This time, we discussed the pros and cons of working from home: one person recommended a co-working event called ‘Laptops Mondays’ which sounds like a nightmare to me (I never liked open-plan offices). We are all different in the way we approach self-employment, but one thing we agreed on was the need to actually get out of your own working environment and spend time with your clients face-to-face. It’s still the best way to build a good working relationship. So I suppose that counts as networking, too.

Having said that – and despite spending a lot of time at a client’s office in Oxford lately – I am doing some work at the moment for a client in London I’ve never met. The work (copy editing) comes from several different people, most of whom I haven’t even spoken to. In this situation, email is fine: they have a job for me and they trust me to do it. This is a case of ‘internal recommendations’: the latest person to contact me said she was told I was ‘the editor-extraordinaire’. Which was gratifying.

In other news

I was very impressed by this email from Ethical Superstore, inviting me to opt out of Father’s Day marketing. I wish more retailers would take note (and I hope they do it for Mother’s Day too).

Email with subject line 'Would you rather not receive Father's Day emails?'

The Guardian has updated its style guide to replace ‘climate change’ with terms like ‘climate emergency’. This is in line with climate scientists and organisations like the UN and the Met Office.

Sadly, it appears that not everyone got the memo that heatwaves aren’t necessarily good news.

Image from Daily Star website with headline 'UK set for hottest summer EVER as Brits bask...'. Twitter comment from Extinction Rebellion: 'How long are we going to ignore the fact that THIS ISN'T NORMAL?'



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