A speed networking event is an effective way to connect with people you otherwise wouldn’t have the chance to meet. Such events are aimed at finding the suitable connections for your employment or business endeavors. You will meet people from all sorts of background and you never know if you could meet an actual business partner or you might meet someone whose experiences and advice contribute to your professional success. Speed networking events are filled with so much potential; it’s upon you to tap into this potential and get the most out of it. The following are 6 tips for success at a speed networking events.
Internalize this fact that time equates with currency and just like currency you want to spend it well. You wouldn’t want to waste it by getting into meaningless conversations and exchanging needless information. If you are going into a speed networking event with fewer participants then you will have some time on your hand to talk with every participant there, freely. However, when it comes to bigger events, the participants keep rotating and you would not have more than half a minute to connect with them. Therefore, always be aware of the importance of this short connective window afforded to you and make the most of it through the subsequent pointers below.
It’s highly subjective what the listener will find attractive in your introduction or your business idea or whatever elevator pitch you make to them to substantiate your connection. Therefore, it is exceedingly important that you are creatively precise and meaningful in whatever introduction you pitch to them. Put your best effort in structuring the content of your elevator pitch in a way that highlights your profile. Another tip here is to focus on your own thing, rather than trying to impress the listener. When the listener observes the passion you have for what you are doing, they are bound to share in that enthusiasm and will listen carefully and might also make a place for your pitch in their memory.
Another important thing in such events are business cards that also help in follow-ups. Make sure the content in it is also precise but relays the needed information. Apart from the essential contact details, make sure you also add in your LinkedIn profile, so your prospective connections can read in your full profile.
Speed networking events are a two way gig. You are not only there to showcase your profile to get better connections. Instead, you have to work in collaboration with the participants to make yourself connected with them also. Because you are trying to make good use of time, you will want to have effective connections resulting from such an event. Therefore, you should try to work at it accordingly by listening and responsive, instead of just making an introductory speech about yourself. Avoid making it into an all-me event, you will not get strong connections that way. Try to reciprocate what your partner is saying, buildup conversations from there. Give non-verbal cues to indicate them that you are listening and understanding. Through this process, you might also engage them in listening and adequately responding to your pitch.
Be in a present-minded state so that you hold everything that happens in the event in your memory. This pointer is important because it will allow you to have follow ups with your connections which is the essence of such events, because what good are connections when you are not going to hit them up after the event? Now some people are more successful in remembering faces than they are in remembering names, so those people could jot down these essentials on a business card handed to them by the other participant, or they can type the information in their mobile phones.
Do not stick to your preparation or do not solely rely on your preparations. This is because you are going to find different sorts of people, and be in different sorts of situations that call for tailoring of your content. Always be ready to improvise as per the participant and type of discussion you are having with them.
Experiences keep adding on and as such there is no definite beginning and end to an event. Before the event, you are preparing, during the event you are likely to improvise, and after the event you should review your learning from the event. The learning you get from a particular event will transcend to another event and its learnings will pile up towards the next event and so on. So, the key point being made here is to always review your performance in hindsight.
Whether or not you have tried attending a speed networking event, we hope these 6 tips for success at a speed networking events encourages you to go.