STAY AHEAD OF THE GAME: PLAY THE SOCIAL NETWORKING BOARD GAME

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Burlington, Ontario – September 15, 2008 - You can now practice social networking with a board game. Flowork International presents the Game of Networking – an interactive board game designed to illustrate the process of social networking and provide a playing field to practice this important skill. By simulating real-life experiences, the game demonstrates the skills and techniques essential to increasing social capital – all in a direct, highly effective manner.

Networking is essential to success – it is almost impossible to achieve our goals without the help of others. “The game is based on the concept that we all have relationships that are separated by degrees, and in those relationships are embedded social resources,” says Dr. John-Paul Hatala, an adjunct professor at Louisiana State University in the U.S. and founder of Flowork. “It would be impossible to identify all the resources that exist, so instead of writing down every resource, we start off by establishing our goals and then try to link the contacts in our network that can help us accomplish them.” The better you are at making contacts and uncovering resources, the easier it will be to achieve your goals.

Unfortunately, not all of us are good networkers and practicing networking is a real challenge. To combat this, Flowork has created the Game of Networking to mirror real life in a fun, relaxed setting, allowing players to gain firsthand experience in a stress-free environment. The game is simple: each player is assigned a goal, and the first player to achieve this goal wins. Of course, networking is a game of strategy – each goal rests on top of a web of associated tasks. Players move through a step-by-step process, making connections, determining which resources are useful to their purposes and negotiating the exchange of these resources with one another. Since resources aren’t simply there for the taking, cooperation is key – players give and take, maintaining their social networks through mutually beneficial relationships. Throughout the game, a facilitator helps each player reflect on their moves and relate the steps they’ve taken to real-life expe riences.

Dr. Hatala has conducted research on the importance of leveraging social capital to accomplish our goals. He states “it’s a much more difficult task then most people think when it comes to networking. Networking to most of us does not come naturally so we really have to work at it. The problem is that there are few opportunities to practice and get feedback at the same time. That’s where the idea of a board game came from.”

Social capital is an indispensable resource. No matter what your goals are, every network you belong to – your family, your friends, your community – contains innumerable resources to help you on your path. The trick is to identify what these resources are and to learn how to use them – a process made clear and comprehensive by the Game of Networking. Networking is an intuitive skill, more an art than a science – learning it requires firsthand experience and practice. This is exactly what the Game of Networking provides. By simulating the steps integral to the networking process, the game allows players to practice networking in a low-pressure setting while internalizing the relevant skills and knowledge.

“The Game of Networking board game is ideal for those who are working to build and develop their careers – a great resource for high schools, colleges, universities, employment programs and corporations” says John-Paul Hatala. Since different goals require different social routes, Flowork is releasing a complete series of card set editions. Future editions will be customized for newcomer integration, career transition, parenting, MBA achievement and leadership development.

The Game of Networking is the perfect way to prepare yourself for success. Sharpen your social, strategic and negotiation skills and learn the art of networking – as simple as rolling the dice!

Additional information regarding the Game of Networking: The Board Game can be found at www.gameofnetworking.com.

For further Information or to schedule an interview contact:

John-Paul Hatala, Flowork International, 1-877-flowork, jphatala@flowork.com, www.flowork.com

About Flowork International

Flowork is an organization that works with individuals, organizations and communities to develop their social capital and more importantly increase their ability to access social resources. Flowork has designed a systematic process for increasing access to social resources through increased awareness of their network and the development of win-win relationships. Tools, such as the Flowork Manager, allows individuals to manage the social networking process and organize their contacts in one central location. Additionally, Flowork offers training which develops the skills necessary to increase access to social resources.

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