So, what networking events should you attend? Whether you enjoy networking or not, networking is a fact of life in American business. Whether it’s in person or online, for many positions it’s expected. It doesn’t matter if you’re an introvert, extrovert, or like most of us, somewhere between. For many, it’s part of the job because networking can help you and your organization. The question is, which events will be most helpful?
What Networking Events Should You Attend?
Know What You Need
Do you know what you need? Before you zoom into a networking event, determine your needs first. Are you looking for a new career, or do you need to hire employees? Are you searching for new products, vendors, or ideas? Understanding your needs allows you to look for events that align with them.
Determine Who Can Help You
Once you’ve determined your needs, review the list of attendees. If that’s unavailable, use social media to ask who’s attending. Seek industries, organizations, and individuals who may help you.
Ask for Recommendations
Reach out to friends, colleagues, and past attendees. Ask why they attended, what they got out of it, and if their needs were met. Look online. Is it being talked about on social media? The lack of conversation says something as well.
Test Your Networking
Try it, but don’t waste your time if it doesn’t fit your needs. Time may be the most valuable commodity we have in this modern age. Are you attending events because your friends do or think you’re supposed to? If so, take a new look at the event and ask yourself—what am I getting out of this?
While it’s certainly OK to attend events because the boss expects you to, the best events fit your needs. Networking events ease the introduction process by making connections the goal, but you first need to decide what your needs are and who can help. Only by understanding your needs can you get the most out of networking. How do you decide what events to attend?
Are You a Good Networker?
I’d always considered myself an effective networker. I’m friendly, easy to talk to, and I’ve never met a stranger. However, none of that makes me a good networker – it makes me outgoing. I needed a plan to be an effective networker. That’s how my networking workbook, Help Networking started.
My plan probably won’t be your plan. That’s why throughout the book there are worksheets, checklists, and simple CTA’s. Use these to create a networking plan that fits your needs.
If you enjoyed this post you might aslo like, Networking Doesn’t End at the Event.