Conference season is almost here and amidst all the preparation and arrangements, we sometimes forget about one of the most important parts of attending a conference …. networking. It can also be the scariest part, especially if you are an introvert. In Episode 63 of Just One Simple Thing, you’ll learn how to network at a conference or in-person event, so it won’t be quite so scary.
I’m always excited to go to an in-person event, but when I get there, I remember why I used to avoid networking.
Just the terms “networking” and “working the room” can bring to mind some negative connotations.
And when you think of networking as what you can get out of it and how it can benefit you, then it is pretty cheesy.
Think of it more as a way to make authentic connections with people who all have the same ultimate goal … to bring a hurting world to the feet of Jesus. In fact, Jesus and his friends were great at making these kinds of connections themselves.
As Christians, making connections comes more naturally than networking. But still, it takes some practice and a bit of thinking ahead to get truly comfortable with it.
Let’s start by separating some truth from some lies.
These people are smarter/more experienced/more polished than me. Possibly TRUTH.
I’m not good enough to be here. Big fat LIE.
She has the same idea as me. Maybe TRUTH.
Nobody wants to talk to me. LIE, for sure.
Now let’s get practical. Before going to the conference, there are some things you can do to make your networking time more comfortable.
- Connect on social media.
- Research the speakers and conference details.
- Practice your elevator speech.
- Have some conversation starters ready.
Head over to my free Facebook group Plan & Pray with Do A New Thing and grab your Conference Networking Cheat Sheet. Tuck it in your conference notebook and take a peek when you need some conversation starters or a little pep talk! I’d love to know what conferences you are going to this summer. Maybe I’ll see you there! Snap a screen shot of this episode, share it on your social media, and share where we can find you during this conference season. Be sure to tag me @doanewthing!
These posts have some other great tips on how to network at a conference:
10 Tips on Networking Like A Pro at a Conference
8 Great Icebreakers for Your Next Networking Event-Meredith Lepore for Levo.com (the conversation about a “whats it” in the Comments of this article is really interesting.
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