How to plan your full year of networking events
I frequently get asked which networking events are the best ones to attend. The short answer is - the best networking events are the ones you actually go to!
Hearing about an event and thinking “Yeah, I should try and go to that” and then never going, isn’t going to do much to help your career. You need to get organised, plan your events and commit to attending.
Here’s how to do it.
Step 1: Pick your events
With so many events to attend, it’s hard to know which ones are going to be worth the effort. If breakfast meetings fit into your schedule well, look for a few that you’ve never been to before. If there’s a new networking group in your industry, give them a try too. Choose as many as you think you’re able to attend and that look worthwhile. Remember to ensure the audience attending are relevant to you and your network.
We have just added 25 Associations to our Networking Directory so check it out if you need inspiration. There are over 1000 (official) groups in Australia so we will continue to add to this over time :)
Step 2: Schedule them and commit to attending
If you don't want to miss out - schedule your events in your calendar. Write down the date, time, name of the event and the venue, and any links to further information regarding the event and the other attendees. Send an RSVP to as many as you can to say you will be attending. This is your commitment. Treat these like an important meeting that you have to attend, and set a reminder for the event and do some research prior to know what to talk about and to who.
Step 3: Get out and network
Once you’ve scheduled time to attend all your events throughout the year, you’ll take comfort knowing you actually have the time to attend (because you haven’t scheduled anything else at that time, right?!). Go to your events, put your best foot forward, and reap the rewards and benefits that come from successful networking.
Planning your events gives you a much greater chance of actually attending. It’s also great to be able to see the year ahead on your calendar that’s full of incredible opportunities that may come your way!
Julia Palmer, a respected Networking Strategist and Chief Executive of the Business Networking Academy, presenting and training on how to create and manage networks that work. To learn more visit www.juliapalmer.com & www.BusinessNetworkingAcademy.com.au
The articles represent the views of the authors and not necessarily that of the Bank. You should seek independent professional advice before acting on any matters set out in the articles.