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Speed Networking – some people love it and some people hate it

I’m in the former camp

If I see the words Speed Networking on an Eventbrite link I’m much more likely to hit attend

But why you ask?

Well here are 6 undeniable reason you should ALWAYS attend a speed networking event

1. High Attendance Numbers
There are 2 things that attract high attendance numbers at networking events

One is a great social media speaker – I’m not even blowing my own trumpet here – just ask any networking group organiser about which subjects attracts attendees

The other is Speed Networking

If you’re time poor and see any of those 2 things listed on a networking event then simply book on

They’re 99% guaranteed to attract a large number of attendees and you’ll feel it’s good use of your time

2. It’s puts introverts and extroverts on a level playing field
I might not always come across this way – but I’m an introvert

The only reason I cope at networking events is I generally know two thirds of the room, so there’s an element of comfort

There are so many unwritten rules about open networking – How to shake someone’s hand? When to approach or not to approach a group? How to leave a conversation the right way? And many many other rules

Speed networking is easier for introverts. 1 person talks for a minute. And the next person talks for a minute. And then move on

The ice breaking is done in one easy swoop

Before you know it you’re like myself – more at ease because you’ve met two thirds of the room before

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3. Best Use Of Your Time

There are not many opportunities to meet 20-30 people in an hour at networking meetings

Genuinely Speed Networking is a great way to leverage your time to get as many intros as possible

Science and research says “We can accurately judge a person’s honesty in only a tenth of a second”

Now I’m not saying 1st impressions are always right – there’s been a couple of times over the past 8 years networking that I’ve been wrong – and I’m not saying speed networking is all you need to do. But it is a good part of your
networking plan to chat to people you wouldn’t normally chat to at open networking meeting

And remember – it’s not just for meeting new people – those 2 minute catch ups with existing connections can be so valuable

4. It’s Networking Tapas
Speed networking is not a way to collect business cards and spam everyone or add everyone to your mailing list

Business is built on relationships, not on one off meetings

So think of speed networking as like a tapas. It’s tasters and samples rather than a main course

You get to sample a series of 20-30 people and then get to see who you’d want to have a further chat / coffee / meeting with

It’s those further 121’s where the magic happens and that’s why you should also attend at least 1-2 regular networking events a month

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5. You Win Business

There’s a lot of things in play here

Online engagement. Customer Reviews. Value Added Content

But I have won business a number of times after meeting someone face 2 face for the 1st time ever at a speed networking meeting

People just want look at you in the eye and know they trust you

Often they’ve made the decision that one day they’ll use your services when the time is right and speed networking serves as that prompt

6. It’s never boring
Very very very occasionally at regular networking you’ll get stuck with someone that bores the absolute hell out of you

With speed networking that never happens as there’s never time to get bored

If you love people you’ll the different ways that people express themselves, you’ll love the anecdotes, you’ll love the bond … and if you don’t it’s over in 2 minutes before the next person

Every time you go to a speed networking you’ll leave the room on such a massive high that sets you up for the day

 

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Alex

Alex McCann is owner of Altrincham HQ – a social media management and training company based in Altrincham, Cheshire that has worked with 100s of local business developing their social media strategy. Alex has 265+ LinkedIn testimonials and is ranked number 1 for Social Media Marketing in the UK via independent customer reviews on Freeindex.

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