Magazine article Black Enterprise

Make That Move

Magazine article Black Enterprise

Make That Move

Article excerpt

You've been offered a great job in a new city. Or, you've decided to seek out a better quality of life in a different locale. Whatever the reason, you're uprooting yourself from your old, familiar community and must now find a niche in a foreign one. If the prospect seems a little daunting, rest assured, it's doable. Especially if you put your networking skills into motion.

Before you decide to move, you should get a read on the community you're considering from people who live there. Start with regional members of organizations you belong to. The national membership offices of your fraternity, sorority, trade groups or professional organizations should be able to connect you with members in other locales.

If you are being transferred by your company, ask the human resource director for phone numbers of some colleagues in the office you may be joining. Specifically request that African-Americans be among them.

In scouting for your future home, get your hands on a black resource directory, if there is one available. SuccessGuide: The Networking Guide to Black Resources, for example, lists an average of 6,000 local sources of black businesses, organizations, associations and services established in several major cities.

No such book for your prospective city? No nearby branch of your social or professional group? Then call the local NAACP, Urban League, United Negro College Fund or church. Becoming active in these groups can accelerate your acceptance as a new community member. (Local African-American newspapers and chambers of commerce can help you locate some of these sources.)

Another good bet: Relocation services like Lea O'Neal's Black Atlanta Transplants (404-696-3571) and Imogene Koehler's The Black Relocation Association in Minneapolis (612-623-4362). These firms can provide valuable information on local schools, real estate, entertainment and even the best places to get your hair done. …

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