This insight was uttered by Bob Bocchino, Belong For Me’s Sales and Marketing Advisor, to company founder Emily Stewart. The two were amid one of their many strategy conversations during the early days of the company. This conversation was especially productive, as this was the conversation that led to our organization’s name, Belong For Me.
This conversation occurred early March 2020 and Belong For Me was a still nameless concept that Emily had begun building in her Charlotte apartment. Emily had just recently left her position on the Forensic Technology team at a Big 4 consulting firm to explore a new approach to networking. During her time at the firm, she became inspired to create her company after realizing the limitations of Employer Networking in the modern workforce. Through personal experience, she observed networking to be dated and unsafe.
After reflecting on her uncomfortable networking experiences, Emily began exploring the problems with traditional networking. Researching the history and the current state of networking, she found that the existing literature on the practice aligned with her lived experience. Networking proved itself to be expensive, and to her surprise, unmeasured. Through this research, the concept for Belong For Me was born and Emily began her journey to modernize Employer Networking and inspire healthier, happier employees in workplaces. The concept needed a name, however.
After moving back home to the Pittsburgh market to further build the company, her conversations with family friend and Belong For Me advisor, Bob Bocchino, became more frequent as the idea grew. During one of their whiteboarding meetings, the two had the exchange mentioned above.
“When new employees join a company, they often ask, ‘What’s in it for me?’ They want so much more than just a paycheck. They want to feel like they belong,” explained Bob Bocchino.
This idea stuck with Emily and the two used parts of this statement to form the company name. Merging the question “what’s in it for me?” with the term “belonging” brought them to the name “Belong For Me.” Emily thought the name was catchy and further represents the company’s mission to connect employees with the colleagues that share their same interests.
This conversation was the start of the Belong For Me as we know it today.