The current perfect storm- whether you call it Hurricane Sandy, Frankenstorm, or “OH S**t what am I gonna do now?”-  provides a compelling testimony to the strengths of effective associating. Networking.

At PMPA today, networking  means   “Helping match shops with open capacity and similar capabilities to shops needing an assist to keep shipments on time due to a natural  or other disaster.”

That’s an “invaluable when you need it,” kind of networking.

Yes, networking can take place at a conference but…

The Precision Machined Products Association (PMPA) created our Disaster Recovery Plan for PMPA members several years ago.

You can find it on our website at Disaster Recovery Plan

We prepared it to  have a structure for providing assistance when a member shop had a fire, storm damage, or lost a key piece of equipment.

We are fortunate to have not had to employ it more than a handful of times.

Yesterday, I posted a notice about where to find the plan, and requesting shops who were available to provide assistance via open capacity or capability  to notify PMPA so we could put them on our  list of candidate shops.

In less than an hour a  couple dozen shops had sent details of their capability, open capacity, materials worked with, and quality system credentials  so that we could prepare our candidate list of shops ready willing and able to assist disaster stricken fellow members.

Many people hear the word “networking” and think of golf, or conversations at conferences, or at local meetings.

At PMPA networking is not just a round of golf…

But networking can also be a more substantial, value added, support function at the time when you need it mostwhen your shop is in the midst of “disaster” and you are torn between the needs of your shop and the needs of your customers.

PMPA’s Business Disaster Recovery Plan for PMPA members is the highest and best form of networking- sharing our strengths to support our customers and fellow members at the time that they need support the most.

Networking. It’s not just a casual synonym for friendly chat or connecting.

In times like this, networking is about making a profound difference. Helping a fellow shop meet their obligations. Protecting and serving the interests of our mutual customers.

PMPA members are stepping up with their offers to assist.

PMPA is  ‘all about’  networking.

Networking as in “Helping match shops with open capacity and similar capabilities to shops needing an assist to keep shipments on time due to a natural  or other disaster.”

We call that effective associating.

What’s your shop’s safety net? Where can you turn for support when the waters rise or a fire shuts you down? 

How do you answer your customers’ queries about your disaster recovery plan?

This social media / networking stuff is new to all of us, so here are seven tips from Bernard Martin on how to optimize your profile on LinkedIn.

  • Fill in all the blanks.
  • Connect to everyone that you know.
  • Make sure that you are “open”to connect.
  • Develop a department level outline for Linked In Profiles, Settings, (URL’s and Links).
  • Define “Who” Targets “Whom.”
  • Leverage your company’s connections at “individual” level.
  • Create / develop your company profile. 

Bernard Martin is President of Rapid Production Marketing and is active contributor on many LinkedIn groups in the manufacturing space.

Bernard Martin IMTSedu Linked In Session

He is frighteningly active on Twitter @rpmconsultants .

He has always advanced the conversation when he has contributed to discussions in which I was involved.

I think that these 7 takeaways were  worth the time I took away from walking the exhibits at IMTS. Your LinkedIn profile is important because this is how you are seen online professionally these days.

How you are seen by your colleagues, employer, competitors, and customers.

What tips do you have for effectively using your LinkedIn Resources?