I attend my fair share of networking events these days, and although I would consider myself personable enough, I am terrible at it. I can’t remember names I’m stingy with my business cards because I know I’ll be the one that has to reorder them if I run out, and I generally gravitate towards the people I already know. I never know what to do with the business cards I collect at these things. They usually sit on my desk and become spots for random notes and shopping lists.
I attended a Mardi Gras networking mixer last week our town’s distillery. It had all the key elements of a great party – liquor, great food, and a band. A LOUD band. And though a lot of eating and drinking were going on, I would not say that a lot of business connections were made. My goal was to meet the event sponsor, a local real estate hot shot. As a fundraiser, I’m always looking for a successful local business person with money to burn. I met the hot shot. She was drunk and wearing a lot of beads. I don’t think I made much of an impression, and it was too loud to give my “Elevator speech.” (I never understood how that name came about. Some of our most awkward and redundant conversations happen in elevators.) I don’t think she would have remembered it, anyway.