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Speed Networking

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When business people attend conferences and other networking events, they tend to gravitate towards people they know, and donít always meet new individuals or business contacts. The "throw-everyone-into-a-room" system of commonplace networking events is especially daunting for someone who may be shy or new to the marketplace.

With increasingly busy schedules, business people spend a lot of time trying to make the necessary contacts to keep their businesses growing. Time is of the essence.

SPEED NETWORKING is a new and fresh way to build your business Rolodex in a time efficient manner!

SPEED NETWORKING is a networking event with an accelerated twist. The program is specifically designed to allow attendees the quick and entertaining opportunity to introduce themselves and pitch their company to other people in business.

With a unique format, participants of SPEED NETWORKING will meet more people, make more contacts, and generate more business ideas in one short evening, than they ever thought was possible at a networking event!

How It Works

With all participants seated in pairs, the SPEED NETWORKING sessions will commence. During each fast paced session, participants will be able to network face-to-face. After the end of each session, participants will quickly alternate their seating arrangements to pair up with their next networking opportunity.

This process will continue until all participants have interacted with each other.

In just a few minutes, participants will share business cards, history and offer new contacts with valuable information about their business.

For example:

  • Who do you know that might need their services?
  • Who has a similar client base and might like to exchange client leads with them?
  • How might each company do business with one another?
  • Can you introduce them to anyone who can help them?

After the official SPEED NETWORKING event is over, participants are encouraged to continue networking throughout the evening.

College/Alumni Example of Speed Networking

This social networking mixer event brings together soon-to-be-graduates with alumni professionals. Based on the format of speed dating, you will have a limited amount of time to cover certain information with each new person you meet. Students will learn how to perfect "pitching" him or herself, and learn how to make a good first impression. Alumni will talk about their post-college job experience and possible employer or industry contacts. Each pairing will last 4 minutes. You'll have a chance to mix and mingle even more after the networking portion during the wine and dessert reception. This is a fun and informal opportunity to network and gain some insight into your own upcoming job search.

Mock Event:

DATE/TIME:
May 18, 2009-6:30 p.m.-9:00 p.m.
Hameetman Science Center Lobby
Business casual attire encouraged

6:30 p.m.-6:55 p.m. Registration/Reception
6:55 p.m.-7:00 p.m. Event format explanation
7:00 p.m.-8:45 p.m. Speed Networking
8:45 p.m.-9:00 p.m. Follow-up Conversations

Topics for STUDENTS to prepare

  • Area(s) of interest after graduation
  • What can you offer others (information, advice, referrals)
  • What do you need from others (contact information, job search advice, etc.)

Topics for ALUMNI to prepare

  • Area of expertise
  • What can you offer students (contact information, job search advice, etc.)
  • Recruitment opportunities for students/what kinds of students you are looking for

Speed networking, it turns out, is similar to speed dating, where potential mates meet in a low-pressure environment to chat for a few minutes before rotating to the next seat. The difference is that in speed dating your goal is to narrow down the playing field of possible matches, while the goal of speed networking is simply to add to your network. Already speed networking had an edge in my book ó no fear of rejection!

Speed networking programs are showing up all around the world. These events tend to be a fun, exciting and effective way to make a lot of initial connections in a very different environment from the standard business networking meetings.

Speed networking programs generally involve people meeting each other one at a time for a short interval and then moving on to the next person in line. They are fairly structured in the way people queue up to meet. For example, one variation is to have two concentric circles of people. The individuals sit across from one another and after the set time period--generally one or two minutes--the outside circle of people gets up and moves in one direction around the circle until everyone has met.

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