June 13, 2016 – Last night Executive Arrangements hosted almost 40 women at my home in Cleveland’s Tremont neighborhood. EA Introduces, is an annual event our company hosts each summer to connect the executive women we helped relocate in the past 18 months with locals.
We regularly heard from those moving to our region, that one of the hardest things to replicate is a circle of girlfriends who are peers and can relate to 18 hour work days, running home to see the kids soccer game and then starting all over again the next day….which leaves precious little time to develop social circles and begin to feel connected. So, we decided to help fix that problem by jump starting their circle of peers with EA Introduces and this was the Class of 2016!
The newcomers were transplants from Madison, WI, Mamaroneck, NY, N. Kingstown, RI, New York, NY, Norwalk & Hartford, CT, Augusta, GA, Detroit, MI, Bainbridge Island, WA, Nashville, TN, St. Paul, MN & St. Louis, MO.
The women who came to meet them and share ideas also come from all walks of life, many are transplants to Cleveland themselves and they remember what that first year in town was like with no connections outside of the workplace. We also sprinkled in a mix of local non-profit executives from The Cleveland Museum of Art, Holden Arboretum/Cleveland Botanical Garden, Equality Ohio and A Kid Again (all great ways to get involved in the civic arena for those who want to nurture passions in their free time). And all those organizations will add these women to their email distribution list (easily unsubscribed if you are on email overload) so they start to feel included in events happening in our town.
Phone numbers were exchanged, business cards traded hands and during the introductions, laughter erupted when alternate ideas were suggested to avoid the Donald Trump/RNC craziness that was headed to Cleveland the following week. Women who relocated as the trailing spouse for their husband’s new job asked for leads to help with their own career transition, newcomers asked for names of babysitters, architects, nail salons, doctors and favorite restaurants. An instant girlfriends group emerged and EA will give each attendee a booklet with the names of those who came so they can stay in touch with each other.
Why do we do this? First of all it helps our corporate clients with retention of the new hire by insuring newcomers are happy, connected and acclimating to their new town (and making friends is a BIG part of that process!). Secondly, it is just the right thing to do! Many newcomers, especially executives, are invited to many work related functions or non-profit benefits, but miss the friendly invitations to come to someone’s home that they had in their last town and we try to jump start that. We show off Cleveland’s mid-westerner friendliness and make sure no one is slipping through the cracks unnoticed.
Once a quarter, EA hosts an event like this for our clients. Sometimes it is geared at the whole family (pumpkin picking in jeans and sweatshirts) and sometimes we host sit down dinners (date night!), but we know that if we keep the connections happening, our clients will be happy and good karma will come back around to help our business!
If you are a company who relocates employees to NE Ohio, or are a newcomer to our region who wishes you had had the benefit of our services and want to learn how we help organizations in our region attract & retain top talent by educating, connecting and acclimating, call us: 216.231.9311