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Connext Nation


By Debby Peters,

Celebrating Our 18th Year of Helping Our Grads to REALLY Connect!

Monthly Lunches
It’s back!  Monthly lunches are now on the calendar for 2019.  We will again be at Smokey Bones 512 W Dussel Blvd, Maumee.  They will be from 11:30-1. The dates of the lunches are:

Aug. 19
Sept 16
Oct 21

This is the third Monday of the month.  We are going to ask you to register in advance which means you can use your business credit card to do so.  The fee for lunch is $16 and the link to register is:

Social NEW!!
The second after-hours event of the year will be Sept 26 from 5:15-7:15pm at Rusty Taco at 1470 Ford St., Maumee.  We’ve had several successful after-hours events there.  Come to have a bit of fun, drink some margaritas and get to know fellow CNers and their guests.  Yes, bring your friends.  It is a great way to introduce them to Connext Nation.

Mini Classes
Coming up we have one mini class on the horizon.  If you want to send a friend to experience a little bit more of CN, this is the best way to do it.  The cost is only $35, although if two people register at the same time it is only $40 for both.  Registration is easy at this link. mini class is August 23 at the BNI office from 11am-1pm.

Did You Know?
Connext Nation is nationally certified to provide CPEs credits for CPAs. For the mini class they get 2 credits and for the ten week class they get 24.  Fall is a great time for that community to acquire these necessary continuing education units to satisfy the requirements for their CPA accreditation.

New Offering for Grads
Thanks to  ’05 CN Grad, Barry Van Hoozen, State Farm Insurance, for the idea, Connext Nation will offer a grad review class that has a Master Mind component attached to it.  This is targeted to those grads who want to reinforce the techniques from the CN course that they may have forgotten.  Each of the six sessions will include training on a specific topic and then the facilitated brainstorming, accountability segment.  Each group will be limited to only 5 or 6 grads.  The cost for the series is only $599 and there is a budget plan of 4 monthly payments of $159.  If a grad requires a Connext Nation manual, the fee of the manual will be $50.  The course will meet weekly from 7:30-9:30 am with the first class on Oct 1 with no class on Oct 15.  Currently the location is to be determined in the Toledo area.  CN can offer this in the Cleveland area if the demand is sufficient.  If you are interested please contact Debby at

Stay in the Know!!
Never miss out on a networking event again!  As CN confirms an event, it is set up under the Events tab on our Facebook page with all of the info and links to register if applicable.  While on our Facebook page, simply click on the Events tab and you will see the Subscribe button on the right just above the list of events. Click on it and you are set to go! You can also invite people to the events and share them to your Facebook page as well! Visit our page at today!

Member Spotlight:

Heidi Hooper
by Debby Peters,

What would you do with all the time in-between if you worked each morning for a couple hours and then did the same at the end of the day? Heidi Hooper, who is the Customer Service Representative for Ultimate Air Shuttle out of Burke Lakefront Airport in Cleveland, is faced with that many days.  For Heidi, she packs the rest of her day usually out there representing the airline.  However she says, “There are days when we have a delay, usually weather-related, that keep me at the airport for a much longer time.  She says, “When we have to divert to another airport, that’s when I get sweaty, because I have to find ground transportation to bring the passengers back to Cleveland where their cars are.  But we are known as the airline that really goes above and beyond for our customers.”  In fact, this past holiday season, a passenger left a suitcase behind and Heidi drove over 90 minutes to take the luggage to its rightful owner.  She said, “And that passenger acted like it was our fault and was very disgruntled.  I just gave this person a big smile and wished her a happy holiday!”   Many of Heidi clients think she IS Ultimate Air, because she is out there all the time representing her company and she has an ownership attitude.
Never one to sit around she tends to put in 12 hour days.  “I’m at the airport at 7 a.m. to welcome my passengers and to get them on the plane.  Usually around 8:30, I can then leave.  The day we talked, she was going to the Beechwood Chamber lunch and doing some networking before having to arrive back at the airport at 5 pm to welcome her passengers again.  Her day would end at around 7 p.m.
Never one to shirk from a challenge, two years ago, Heidi accepted the challenge of running for the Cleveland area Lymphoma & Leukemia Society  (LLS) Woman of the Year.  She, along with five other women, competed to see which one could raise the most money for the charity.  Heidi said it was the most stressful time in her life because she did so much and she didn’t want to let the charity down.  I think she is a winner having raised almost $40,000 in a specific amount of time.  This past year she helped students at the Solon High School compete for Students of the Year for LLS. Their team, Solon Supports, set a goal that was higher than the average and they met and exceeded that goal.
She also was in a charity fashion show as a “Big Shot.”  The group, Flashes of Hope, pair celebrities with children, “Little Stars,” who are experiencing cancer.  Photographers donate their services to get pictures of the children that the families can have forever.  They raised $1 million dollars at this event which then goes to childhood cancer research.  Heidi represented Ultimate Air Shuttle and the company donated a charter flight worth about $25,000 for the auction.
As I mentioned, ever busy Heidi is a member of WIN Cleveland and is on their board.  She also is active with the Rocky River Ladies Lunch Bunch & Networking Group and Professional Women’s Connection and is a member of both the Beechwood and Rocky River Chambers.  As a result of volunteering at a Paddleboard race last year, she decided to purchase a board for herself this year.  Any chance she gets she loads her board on her car and heads to water!  She says, “I just love being on the water, being outdoors and seeing nature.”  She even participated in a paddleboard race where her goal was to NOT finish last. She surprised herself by finishing in the middle of the pack on the 2 ½ mile course.  She relates, “At the end I said, ‘Oh was that two miles?’  For the next race I’m going to either go for the longer 5 mile course or paddle faster on the shorter course!”

Heidi has a full social life with a wide network of friends.  She shares that she has traveled more this year than she has in her life.  She’s had a trip to Ecuador, two trips to New York City, two trips to Florida and one to Saugatuck, Michigan. 
One thing that she also loves to do is to shop for bargains, especially shoes.  Her most favorite recent purchase was a pair of summer shoes that she bought last fall on sale for $12.  She also likes to snap photos with her phone always seeing the details in a slightly different way.  Her posts on Facebook demonstrate this skill.  A secret that she’s not sure she wants the world to know is that she likes to take naps when her schedule allows.  My guess is that she doesn’t get very many of those because while it sounds like her job is just a couple hours each day, she makes it expand way beyond those hours!


CN Horn Tooting


Michael Temple of Temple Development Corporation is proud to announce the launch of another successful website for a national manufacturing company. The website is located at and is designed to build the client's email list and showcase its products.
Kym Cragel, reports that Swim with Kym was voted Family Favorite runner up in Swim Lessons category in Toledo Parent Magazine.  The Maumee Mirror ran an article about Swim with Kym ISR lessons that will be partnering with the Elizabeth Scott Community in July and August. 
Dale and Networking  
by Debby Peters,
Dale Carnegie published, How to Win Friends and Influence People in 1937, and today it is still a classic that has something to offer to the reader.  He espouses various principles to help his readers to have the ability to express ideas, to assume leadership, and to arouse enthusiasm among people.  That being said, the principle that I remember most is the 3Cs; “Don’t criticize, condemn or complain.”  Maybe the reason I remember it is that it is the one I have to work on the most.
It is almost human nature to see what is not pleasing or what doesn’t work.  How can we use the 3Cs from above to change our point of view.  For example: if I am meeting with someone and they are breaking the above rule, probably the voice inside my head is saying, ”This person is a downer.”  Allowing those thoughts to linger, means that I am also breaking that very rule! I am working on doing a better job of re-directing my thoughts and words, so that I might then transition the conversation by asking a question.  It might be as easy as, “So _____, tell me what do you hope to achieve with this job or company?” Criticizing can be a habitual pattern.  Breaking the pattern allows for thoughts of a different variety to enter the fray.  I’m getting better at it, but as I said, I still have some work to do. What about you?

Worth a Listen
Ed. Note:  We all spend so much windshield time in our cars. Andrew Stainbrook turns that into learning and listening time for his career development.  Below is one title of an electronic book that he listened to.

“Reading” in the Car
by Andrew Stainbrook,
Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It 
By Chris Voss
When selecting a new book to explore, I tend to gravitate toward books that focus on psychology and human interaction. While someone is communicating with us, we have the opportunity to learn a great deal from what they say and how they say it. 
In the book Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It, Chris Voss, an international hostage negotiator who spent thirty years with the FBI shares nine fundamental principles on negotiation and persuasion. Chris breaks down his book into ten easy to read chapters starting each chapter with an interesting story related to his life as a hostage negotiator and rounding out the chapter by tying in one of his fundamental principles.  In covering the content of this book several times, I keep thinking back on this one simple sentence Chris shares and it’s that, "The person who is not talking is in control of the conversation."  By implementing this simple practice into my daily life, it has awarded me the opportunity to ask better questions, gather more information, and figure out what people really want.  Whether I am negotiating a new management contract with a client or getting myself out of hot water with my lovely wife Erin, the takeaways from this book have helped me a great deal in both my personal and professional life. 

Personal Introductions:  Always?
by Debby Peters,
A hallmark of the Referral Pursuit course is the understanding of how important personal introductions are. I want to be known as the person who makes personal intros, but I must admit that it doesn’t always happen.  I do have a triage system that I use to help me to decide how to proceed.
  • If the person is a referral partner, a personal introduction is the hallmark of that relationship.
  • If the person I want to help is both a fellow BNI member and a CN grad, a personal introduction certainly is in the forefront.
  • If the person is a fellow BNI member, a personal intro might happen depending on the situation.
  • If the person is a CN grad, I always want to make a personal intro if possible.
  • If the person is a chamber member that I know well, a personal intro comes into play usually.
  • If the person is a new acquaintance, a personal intro may or may not be involved.
  • If the person is someone that I’ve just met, an email introduction will suffice.
As you can see, the level of relationship determines the time I will give to the introduction.  The stronger the level of connection, the more likely I am to share my time to that person.  It is not always black and white, but at least it is a guideline.

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