Virtual networking events are a new, but growing, concept in the social and entrepreneurial world. So, it is understandable that plenty of people are still confused about how to attend them properly. Moreover, the lack of online and offline guides makes it difficult for newbies to know what to do during such events.
To help you out, here are the things you need to do before, during, and after a virtual networking event.
Things To Do Before Your Virtual Networking Event
Before joining a virtual networking event, you first need to get ready for it. Otherwise, your participation will likely be unproductive and a waste of time. Here are the top things you need to do before attending an online networking event.
Research About The Meeting’s Purpose
Most, if not all, virtual networking events have a specific purpose why people organized them. For example, people can organize them to connect those from similar business niches, people with similar ideas, or people from the same background. Whatever the purpose is, make sure to research about it thoroughly beforehand.
Doing so will make you more confident with the ideas that you may share during the meeting. It will also communicate to other participants that you are serious about the event. Research will also help you know what to bring to the virtual networking event.
Research About The People
Many networking events allow participants to access the name of others. If so, do a quick research on the identity and background of the people that you will be meeting. Having a little bit of knowledge about other participants will give you an idea of how you can best approach them and what type of attire you should wear.
It will also give you topics to ask them about when your conversation is starting to get boring. Lastly, doing so will help you identify which people you should spend most of your time with.
Prepare Your Talking Points
Your talking points are the ideas you wish to share with your co-participants in the virtual networking event. Therefore, it is best to prepare some of your talking points before the actual meeting.
This is so that you are always ready to share when it is your turn to speak. Researching your talking points will also help you identify other things you may want to share or ask about when the time comes.
Things To Do During Your Virtual Networking Event
Congratulations, you have successfully joined a virtual networking event. Now, you need to ensure that nothing wrong happens during the whole time. Make sure to keep these in mind during the entire duration of the event.
Share Your Ideas
The most crucial thing you need to do during the online networking event is to socialize with the other participants. The best way you can do this is to share your ideas. By doing so, you will encourage other participants to speak to you and give their inputs or suggestions.
Give Others A Chance To Speak Listen Attentively
Equally crucial to speaking is listening. By listening attentively to others, they will get a sense that you appreciate their presence. This will encourage them to speak with you more and build a stronger connection with you.
Organize Your Thoughts
Lags during online meetings are one of the most frustrating things about them. This problem is exacerbated when the participants have trouble organizing their thoughts. If an idea suddenly pops into your head, make sure to organize them with your other ideas first. Doing so will help you, and other participants avoid jumping back and forth between topics.
Take Down Important Information
While attending a virtual networking event, make sure to have a pen and paper beside you. If not possible, use your computer’s notepad application to take notes of key information. This information should include other’s ideas, meaningful information about other participants, and contact information of others.
Things To Do After Your Virtual Networking Event
Ensuring the success of your virtual networking event does not stop once you have disconnected from the online call. You need to follow up and follow through with others. Not only will it cement the good outcomes of the event, but you will also ensure that future events are also a success.
Give Honest Feedback To The Organizer
Most people who join virtual networking events think twice about giving feedback to the organizers. Most of them are afraid to unintentionally hurt the latter’s feelings, leading to them being banned from future events.
However, the contrary is true. Organizers often crave feedback, both positive and negative, from their participants. Assessments given by participants help organizers improve their processes and plan for better future events. In addition, it makes it easier for them to identify parts of their event that went less than they intended.
Reflect On The Outcome Of The Meeting
After giving feedback to the organizers, make sure to do the same for yourself. Reflect on how you performed and what you were able to achieve after the event. Some of the questions that you may ask yourself are:
- Were you able to share all your thoughts?
- Were you able to connect with other people?
- Were you able to collect contact information from the others?
- How can you improve your socialization skills for future virtual networking events?
Follow-Through On Your Promises
Suppose you promised other partakers that you will contact or collaborate with them in the future, make sure to follow through. There are a few things more frustrating than hoping for a promise that will never come. Not only will you risk getting banned from future events, but you also risk damaging your reputation in the outside world.
Congratulations! You now know what to do before, during, and after you join a virtual networking event. As a result, you should feel more confident when joining them and increase your chances of reaching your goals.