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I love brewed fresh daily. Just posted, ‘Networking Is Still Key.’

I have not written in several months because of this summer class that, quite frankly, took a log of energy. Furthermore, I have been back to school for the past year in order to obtain my Master’s in Adult Learning and Development. I have one semester left, if everything goes well.

Even though I have been in school, I still go to networking events because you ‘never know who you might meet.’ I connect with people on facebook, twitter and linkedin, plus blogging. I wrote a few months back that I had a story written about me because I get out there and meet people. I just hate sitting at home and doing nothing. At least it gives me a chance to learn something or connect to one more person. It seem so simple but it isn’t.

A few nights back, I was invited to a JumpStart, Inc. represents the best and brightest in 21st century economic development. ( The entrepreneurial event that asked the basic question, why should I work for a ‘Start Up’? Simple, you get to learn a lot (wear many hats) and gain valuable experience. It is a matter of finding these growing entrepreneurial companies and doing your homework. They recommend reading the Business Section of The Plain Dealer or Crain’s Cleveland Business. You basically need to “wow them’ in selling yourself and finding that unique opportunity.

A few basic notes I got out of the meeting which might be review.

1. Reach out to the companies you are interested in. A girl on the panel sent her resume to a company but got no response. Sound familiar? Well, she thought ‘outside the box’ and ’strategically’ targeted emails to specific people in the organization; and guess what? They hired her because she went the extra mile. It sounds crazy and I am sure people don’t believe it, but I heard it from someone who is now employed.

2. From a reputable recruiter, you need to ‘standout’ and do something extra in order to get noticed. You can’t just send in a resume and instantly get hired or get a call back. This recruiter specially said she hired interns who took people to lunch or took an initiative in ‘reaching out’ to others within the organization. It says to an organization that you really want to work there. I realized she talked about interns, but the same rules apply to your current ‘job search.’

3. When leaving a voicemail message on the phone, give your name and SPELL it SLOWLY. Recruiters do not have the patience in listening to your message more than once in order to get your information. Also, it is also a good idea give an email address, sometimes it is easier for HR to just email you.

4. Check and double check your resume and cover letter for grammatical and spelling errors. This still happens.

5. Do not discount a company because it is small and not one of the Fortune 500.

Again, be truthful to your self and decide what will make you happy. If you want structure and stability, go to a large corporation; if you want to be challenged and incur some risk, a smaller organization might be for you. I realize it is a difficult challenge when you have been out of college for perhaps several years.

I actually took a risk and began redefining myself into a new path. I don’t know yet if that was a smart move or not; and I will be back in the throes of looking for work very soon  after 18 months of unemployment. Yes, 18 months. Where did the time go. So far, it has been the best decision that I have made in a long time.

Get out there and decide what truly makes you happy. Because when all is said and done, you inevitably will be at a job for 8 hours a day, so you may as well do something that is fun.

Ed Morrison · Huh?

August 7th, 2009

Ohio has improved its national ranking as one America’s top states for business, ranking 29th overall, in the yearly survey conducted by CNBC. The 2009 rank is an improvement over its 30th place ranking in 2008 (tie with Illinois), a result of Ohio’s purposeful redesign of its business climate that is making the state an ideal location for businesses to compete in a 21st century global economy…

Ohio Improves Business Climate According to CNBC Report

Ed Morrison · Youngstown+

August 7th, 2009

“We are collaborative, we’re organized and we are committed to the entire Mahoning Valley and not just to our individual communities,” said Tony Paglia, the Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber’s vice president of government affairs.

Nine communities in Mahoning and Trumbull counties will collaborate with Youngstown State University’s Center for Urban and Regional Studies to implement a Web site to market locations in those communities for economic development. This was the top project in terms of votes.

Contest for funds pays off for Valley

(Meanwhile, Cleveland+, it appears, has dissolved to a few airport wall posters and a handful of soot soiled banners hung around town.)

Ed Morrison · Priceless

August 6th, 2009

Developer David Sadd:

“Citizen participation is automatic everywhere else in the country. We’re surprised we didn’t see that in this Cuyahoga process.”

Jay Ross, the county’s director of central services:

“We need to sit behind closed doors and make decisions to benefit taxpayers.”

(Like buying a $40 million building, useless to the County? I wonder if Mr. Ross is aware that he sounds like an goofball.)

Developers opposed Cuyahoga County commissioners’ ’secrecy’ in choosing administration building site

JP Kilroy · Burning River Fest

August 5th, 2009

Burning River Fest 2009

Burning River Fest 2009


Here are some lessons I have learned about Chinese corruption from our small water project:

  • The corruption requires a marriage between a criminal gang (to intimidate) and a network of corrupt local officials (to manipulate a weak legal system) — The criminal gang, by itself, only intimidates. It’s in the retail corruption business. The criminal gang can only get the scale with the collusion of corrupt public officials. These officials provide the leverage to pull off large-scale schemes.
  • The corruption generates huge profits to feed and reinforce the networks.– In Lantian county, the main scheme involves converting industrial land into residential development without 1) going through the legal procedures for changing the use of the land and 2) paying the County any fees. So far the total is about 250 million RMB, not chump change (that’s about $40 million in an economy where senior level administrators are paid about $12,000 a year.) Meanwhile, the County cannot find the money to pay the full pensions of its health care workers (about $200-$300 a month)
  • The corruption requires relatively small steps by individuals operating within the network.– In the United States, public corruption usually involves relatively simple transactions. In China, public corruption involves networks that both execute an illegal scheme and subsequently protect members of the network. Each member of the network takes a relatively small step, but taken together the corruption impacts are relatively large (a perverse network effect).
  • The court system offfers no protection; judges can easily be corrupted.– Given the amount of money flowing through these corruption networks, the court system doesn’t stand a chance.
  • The Communist Party does not have an effective way to supervise and discipline corrupt local officials.– When we went to the Lantian Bureau of Supervision and Discipline, we learned that Yang, the head of this office, is a close friend of Suen, the gangster who controls the county. Yang encouraged us to meet with Suen and his representatives. He had no interest in investigating anything. Rather, he was trying to find a way to diffuse a situation that could run out of control (and ultimately disrupt the network).
  • The entire focus of Communist Party intervention is to contain the controversy.– There is no effort to investigate, to vindicate legal rights, or to punish clearly illegal activity by public officials. The reason is simple. These networks stretch far and wide. They are self reinforcing. They are closed. If they can contain the controversy, nobody will get hurt (except, of course the pensioners).
  • Learning how corruption works in China requires penetrating deeply complex and hidden networks.– The only way I was able to identify corrupt acts by local officials was through my own trusted networks that I have developed over the past twelve years. There are a lot of good people in Lantian who want too be free of this evil.
  • You can learn more by visiting the web site I built last week:

    I’ve got a discount code if you’d like to attend this Fri CoolTwitterConference. DM me for it.

    mom-enjoying-the-breeze“Amazing Grace” Memorial & Celebration Service for Barbara Craver
    Sunday, August 9, 2009

    1:30pm – 2:30pm
    First United Methodist Church of Cleveland
    3000 Euclid Avenue (East 30th & Euclid)
    Cleveland, OH

    Join us to Celebrate the life of Barbara Ann Craver (2/2/33-7/7/09). As the Founder and the Executive Director of UMACC, Inc., from 1976 through the late 1990’s Barbara and the agency directly helped over 5,000 individuals and their families on their road to recovery from chemical dependency.

    Barbara Craver was one of the first, if not the first, to bring the now common technique of Intervention to Ohio. She also was a pioneer in including the family in the recovery process. A National Certified Addiction Counselor (NCAC) and member of the National Association of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC), she was frequently written about and quoted in The Plain Dealer and a regular guest authority on local TV such as the “Morning Exchange” and radio stations.

    In lieu of flowers please make donations to:

    First United Methodist Church
    3000 Euclid Avenue
    Cleveland, OH 44115
    Include in MEMO: Barbara Craver Memorial Social Intervention Fund

    We are compiling a memory book for the service to handout so please comment on Facebook here or send an email to and it will be included.

    Last day to make your vote count on who gets to share $300K. Vote today: (@ccarsonthompson RT )