Networking. A part of professional life that inspires…mixed feelings. It always seems to happen at the least ideal times: after work, the end of the day at a conference and my personal “favorite”…morning…early morning. Talk and drink coffee? Clearly thought up by a morning person.
Networking is an important aspect of a young professional’s life, yet it was never mentioned during college. Did I miss that class? Or was it that in college it simply meant the parties we may have attended, because someone knew someone and so forth. Before you knew it, you were walking into a stranger’s house with a group of friends.
At the last GET to Meet event we saw a plethora of smiles, laughing and a general good vibe flowing through the crowd. Perhaps it was the pretzel and cheese fondue at Culinary Dropout, which can take the edge off of any situation. Or, could it be that many had come with a networking wingman (or woman)? Did habits from college days past resurface?
The idea is simple, the term destined to become a trending hashtag (#azwingman – you know what to do), when planning to attend a networking event, bring a wingman (or woman). Is your friend reluctant? No problem! GET members receive a free pass to bring a guest (i.e. wingman/woman).
Of course, the general wisdom is that you are networking to meet new people. Perhaps it was the parties that served as a Networking 101 class in college. Did you ever dare your friend to get someone’s phone number? Well, there is nothing wrong with a friendly wager. Inspire each other to get out there and mingle with a bet, whoever talks to more new people in an evening buys dinner after. Get creative and let us know what your networking tactics are on Facebook.
If you still aren’t sold, take a look at these tips from the Harvard Business Review. Then, send out an invite to your chosen wingman/woman for our next event on May 25 – GET to Learn. We’ll see you there!