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Power of networking

December 11, 2023

Networking can be undervalued if not implemented correctly and at times looked down upon.

Networking offers numerous benefits, both professionally and personally. Networking is the process of interacting and building relationships with others, typically for the purpose of mutual benefit. It involves connecting with people in various contexts, such as professional settings, social gatherings, online platforms, and industry events, with the aim of establishing and nurturing relationships that can provide support, information, opportunities, and other valuable resources.

Networking begins with initiating and fostering connections with individuals. This involves getting to know them, understanding their backgrounds, and finding common ground. Networking can expose you to a wide range of career and business opportunities. Through connections, you may learn about job openings, potential clients, or partnerships that you wouldn’t have otherwise discovered.

Successful networking is based on the principle of give-and-take. It involves finding ways to offer help to others while also seeking opportunities for oneself. Networking is an ongoing process that requires maintaining contact with individuals, nurturing relationships, and finding ways to provide value to each other over time.

Networking provides access to a wide range of opportunities, such as mentorship, advice, and industry insights. Actively seeking and leveraging these opportunities is a key aspect of effective networking. Networking demands professionalism, trustworthiness and honesty. Building a reputation as a reliable and trustworthy individual is crucial for long-term networking success.

Effective networking involves connecting with individuals from diverse backgrounds, industries, and perspectives. Embracing diversity and inclusivity can lead to richer and more valuable connections.

Overall, networking can be a powerful tool for professional and personal growth, providing access to opportunities, knowledge, and support that can help you advance your career, achieve your goals, and enrich your life.

Ultimately, being a part of the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce family, our members invest into their business or organization, and networking is a key element to their success!

December Chamber ActivitiesNetwork at Noon Lunch (member event): 11:45 a.m.–1 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 13 at Unwined Wine & Beer Bar, 320 Sullivan St., Punta Gorda. We will be doing a White Elephant Gift Exchange. Bring one wrapped gift ($20 or less value). This will be a lot of fun. Registration/meal selection required. To RSVP, visit

Third Wednesday Coffee (member event): 8–9 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 20 at Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center, 75 Taylor St., Punta Gorda. Coffee Sponsor: The Daily Sun. Program: All the award winners will be announced from our 45th Annual Christmas Parade. Registration is required to make proper arrangements. To RSVP, visit

Ribbon-CuttingBlind Spot: 5–6 p.m. (ribbon-cutting @ 5:30 p.m.) Tuesday, Dec. 12, 1801 El Jobean Rd., Port Charlotte. Appetizer, refreshments and raffles will be provided. Registration is requested to make proper arrangements. To RSVP, visit

Special AnnouncementToys for Tots: Once again, our Chamber office is a drop-off location site for new unwrapped toys for the youth in our community who are in need. Please feel free to come by our office to drop off the much-needed toys. Toys will be collected through Thursday, Dec. 14. There is no better way to put a smile on a child’s face during Christmas time than receiving a brand-new toy. Our chamber office is located at 2702 Tamiami Trial, Port Charlotte.

Special eventsOur 13th annual Business Expo (Hottest Business Day in Paradise): 10 a.m.–3 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2024 at Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center, 75 Taylor St., Punta Gorda. Free and open to the public. Imagine marketing your business in an 8-by-10-foot booth and having 1,000-plus visitors and residents see the products and services you provide. You will have the opportunity to see more folks in a matter of five hours than you may see in a month. This will be an excellent environment for maximum business exposure for sales, lead generation and develop great connections. Plus, there will be over 90 other exhibitors for business-to-business to develop client/customer relationships. Deadline to reserve you booth is Tuesday, Jan. 23. There will be no late entries accepted. To reserve your booth, visit or call the chamber office at 941-627-2222.

Bob White is executive director of the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce.