February 27, 2015

By the time you get this issue, I’ll be at my first Global Pet Expo. I expect to enjoy it immensely but also be somewhat overwhelmed. I’ll apologize now to all the people I hope to touch base with at the show but don’t actually get a chance to see. I hope to see anyone I miss at Top2top or SuperZoo or some other event soon.

One of the people I’m hoping to meet at Global is Lorien Clemens of PetHub. She is 2014 WIPIN Woman of the Year. I got to speak with her over the phone for our interview in this issue and now I’m excited to meet her. I found her commitment to lost pets and to helping others in the pet industry inspiring.

Her interview got me thinking a lot about networking and the role that personal relationships play in the pet industry. I’m at my current position partly due to the relationships I had made in the industry.

I first started writing for Pet Age because our account executive Brianne, who knew me from T.F.H., recommended me to then editor-in-chief, Michelle. When an associate editor position opened up at Pet Age, our author Sandy Robins, whose books I had edited, suggested me to Michelle, who thought I wouldn’t be interested. Spoiler alert: I was.

One thing that Lorien said in the interview that really resonated with me was that she approaches new business relationships with what she can do for that other person or company in her mind rather than what they can do for her or her company. That’s a really refreshing way of crafting business relationships. Call me a hippie if you want but I feel like that attitude generates good karma that will return to you in some way. It wasn’t my intention when working with Brianne and Sandy that they would help me find work later but obviously I made enough of a good impression on them that they did. You never know what fruits the seeds of a good relationship will bear.

It also helps to keep in mind that we are choosing to work—directly or indirectly—with pets. Sure, we are in this industry to make a living but we’ve chosen to make a living by working with animals. What we do benefits animals, even if it’s an indirect route, such as by editing a pet business magazine.

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