This is the second in an occasional series on San Francisco East Bay job support resources. The last article was on Experience Unlimited
In 2001, Danville’s St. Isidore School principal Kathy Gannon-Briggs noticed the increase in fathers who were dropping their kids off and picking them up after school. “Why weren’t they at work?” she wondered.
As Tom Loarie, one of the present team leaders for the St. Isidore Networking Group (SING), tells the story, she quickly figured out that these fathers had been victims of the dot.com crash, were out of work, and needed help.
Founded in 2001, SING, which is open to all faith traditions , met weekly at Kathy’s home to provide support for those in, or thinking about job transition. The group helped over 250 executives, managers, and professionals between its inception and 2005 when it went into cyber-mode. With the 2008 economic meltdown and strong demand, SING renewed its weekly meetings in January 2009 and is again providing hope and inspiration mixed with resume-writing, interviewing, and networking skills to a much larger group which now meets at St. Isidore Catholic Church.
Each week usually has a guest speaker with transition related talks. One of the recent speakers was John Younger, Founder and CEO of Accolo, a recruitment outsourcing firm, whose message was that today’s job search is like the old wild west: there are no longer any rules. He also stressed the importance of using every social network available to “know” your target company and hiring manager and find creative ways to reach out to them.
SING provides support on networking, identifying and ranking your next company, different types of resumes and cover letters (and how to write one that is top-notch), different types of interviews and interviewing techniques, the use of search firms and job boards, and position negotiation techniques.
SING’s membership in their Google Group is now over 300 members, who receive a daily email with jobs, tips, relevant articles and bits of motivation and inspiration. “This ministry had been extremely rewarding to all involved. I have been fascinated with the bonds participants have developed with one another and know that all are developing friendships which will last well beyond the current crisis.” echoes Loarie.
If you go:
What: St. Isidore Networking Group (SING)
Where: 440 La Gonda, Danville, CA 94526
When: Monday Evenings from 7:00 to 8:30 PM
Contact: Tom Loarie – (925) 525-0272
JP McDermott is a financial services and insurance advisor in Walnut Creek, CA. specializing in career transitions. He is also a career and financial coach, a freelance writer on career coaching with SF Examiner.com, and has been volunteering his time and experience to various non-profit, service and civic organizations.
JP lives in Danville with his wife Candy.
Check out his LinkedIn profile http://www.linkedin.com/in/jpmcdermott