Sharpen your networking skills and make the most of the conference!
Now more than ever! Networking has been pretty challenging lately. Keep your distance. In times of Corona, the signs are pointing to retreat: Business events – put on hold. Conferences – cancelled. Get-togethers – postponed indefinitely. Digital conversations are also nowhere near as sustainable as face-to-face contacts. Now it’s time to get back on track again!
One of the most valuable takeaways from any conference is the new relationships made through networking and the new perspectives gained through connecting in person.
- Have clear goals: With a full programme, it is easy to get lost in the flow of things. Identify clear objectives of sessions to attend, who you hope to meet, and what you want to take away.
- Come prepared: If there are specific vendors, speakers, or attendees you want to meet, search for the latest news, read their latest blog post, to have a conversation starter.
- Identify a commonality you share: This not only gives you something to talk about but also conveys that you’re «one of them». The Conference is the perfect place to share your passion for testing!
- Be approachable: Don`t spend your time outside, looking busy with your laptop. Mingle and look open and engaged. People will approach you!
- Don`t be a fan: Don`t spend all your time trying to meet the most famous speakers. Listen, learn and connect with other attendees that have similar interests and objectives. This makes the conference a worthwhile investment.
- Be ready with Conversation Starters: If you get stuck, have a few lines ready to get it going again. It can be as simple as «which speakers are you looking forward to?» or «What are you hoping to get out of this conference?».
- Not in a talking mood? Give others time to share, practice attentive listening and get new insights the silent way.
Last but not least:
- Don`t forget that most people at the conference are in the same situation as you!