There are 27,000 current members in Linked n Chicago, thousands of members & friends of Big Ooga, Local First, BNC, Evanston Chamber, West Suburban Chamber, the Naperville LinkedIn Business Group and the Evanston / North Shore Business Group.
Among them, the owners, founders, leaders, volunteers and members share a common vision, to create a working, generous, authentic community where contributions and people are honored. Where prosperity, appreciation. respect and concern drives evolution.
Big Ooga has been invited to manage the Linked n Chicago Entrepreneur Network and to help bring out our common best. At first, when Founder and Owner, Mary McFarlin and Community Thought Leader, Bob Tricarico invited me into the position, I wanted to say yes with a marching band, a few shameless blimps and chilled martinis for all! Instead, I sought the consult of respected business people and friends.
Their advice was to put one foot in front of the other. So here are the first steps.
My news is our news. My journey is our journey. My work is our work.
Big Ooga will remain a “preferred vendor” network where a Big Ooga designation is synonymous with excellence. Our events will remain free with a listed membership and we will continue to showcase and connect you to companies that need your services. Big Ooga will begin entertaining other groups so that we’ll be able to expand your business relationships exponentially.
April 6th at the Victor Hotel we’ll be entertaining the Evanston Chamber of Commerce, The Evanston / North Shore LinkedIn Business Group and Naperville LinkedIn Business Group. The effort is led by Greg Maddox, a bright, strategic, businessman devoted to encouraging and embracing the talents and contributions of everyone in his lexicon. You will love him. Barry Moltz of Crain’s and the Trib is our special guest host! Imagine Digital Entertainment Media will be conducting video interviews.
In June we have a joint event planned with BNC – Business Networking Chicago – and there is nobody in town as well known and well loved in this space like the magnificent Jean Pickering. Leading BNC is David Carmen – who made the decision to say yes, and to whom I’m eternally grateful.
In July we will be working with Local First and the West Suburban Chamber of Commerce. Both groups share our passion for driving local business and keeping our community vibrant.
And then I must circle back to Mary McFarlin and Bob Tricarico – who have quietly and effectively built the largest LinkedIn business network in Chicago, which is growing everyday. Thank you for this honor!
To the Chicago Entrepreneurial community, the Entrepreneur Network – of Linked n Chicago will have specific Entrepreneur Subgroups. Entrepreneurs who serve large companies will have a special group, entrepreneurs who serve small companies & consumers will have their own group, and entrepreneurs that serve women – or non-profits – or technology or need VC will all have specialty groups to convene, converse and connect. If more than one subgroup works for you, join several!
These groups are open to everyone from emerging entrepreneurs to the most polished and successful.
We are also going to begin having informal coffees to bring ideas and people to the table. (Greg has been doing this for months in Evanston, Naperville and the North Shore and it is working beautifully)
On a personal note, this has been my dream.
Now all we have to do is work our heads off, be good to each other and bring our brains and energy to the table.
CALL TO ACTION- We are looking for very smart, very skilled business strategists to help us build a structure that benefits all of us. If you know of someone who shares our values and mission, is Chicagoland-based and would be willing to join the evolution and contribute to the thought leadership – please get in touch with me – Lennie@BigOoga.com or via phone 708-524-4562.
CALL TO ACTION 2 – Join us on April 6th! Meet people, get business, join the evolution! The first step is just walking through the door! Click the link below for your ticket.