Stories from New York: Making things happen

I was thrilled when the Greater IBM Initiative invited me to be one of
the Core Connectors. Thrilled, yes, and more than a little anxious. I
didn’t know what I could bring, being so new to IBM and knowing hardly
anyone, much less being able to convince them to register for a new
social networking site or get them excited about networking with IBM
alumni I didn’t even know. Still, I accepted the invitation with great
enthusiasm, and I signed up to help with the blog.

I still haven’t contributed anything to the blog despite all the stuff
I’ve been blogging here about networking. I think I should just work
up the nerve to get one of these potential articles out there in
public. =)

My insecurity about not feeling like a proper Core Connector didn’t
stop me from being excited about the events the Greater IBM Initiative
was organizing. They were kicking it off with parties in New York, San
Francisco, and other awesome places.

On 2006.09.16 (Saturday), I woke up and asked myself, “What if we could make this happen?” I knew I really wanted to meet these people in person. I wanted to meet other people serious about social networking and passionate about connecting people. So I said, okay, what can I do to get there?

I was thinking about it during the Queen West Art Crawl, and I just kept seeing encouraging signs wherever I went. Quinn, Ian, Simon and I were hanging out at the Melody Bar for karaoke (kudos to Simon for stepping out of his comfort zone, although we still haven’t gotten him to sing!). Someone sang “New York, New York” – imagine that! It made me smile, and for the rest of the evening I felt such an urge to break out into song.

Next thing I knew, a UK IBMer called me up to tell me to check my mail, because the Greater IBM Initiative had heard me muse about things on my blog and people were trying to figure out how to fit me into their budget. My mom hooked me up with a family friend who could lend me couchspace. Suddenly, everything was falling into place.

All I needed to do was find a cheap way to get to New York. I stumbled across Skybus, which offered a round trip for USD 100. What a deal! I signed up for that using my Canadian credit card, scrambled to pack my things and prepare for the networking event, and off I was!

And that’s how I found myself in New York last Thursday: a crazy idea that I wanted to make happen, and the generous, generous support of family and friends and everyone around me.

Wow.

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