Sharing experience

Effective ways to strengthen your network ties after attending Conferences

By Barbara Siqueira

Initially you are excited about attending the next conference, after reading about the speakers, their topics, and the city where the conference will take place.

 At the moment you started talking with your friends, family or co-workers about this, you will begin to hear: “This is great! You are going to have many opportunities to network and it will be helpful for your career (or project / or scientific research).”

Things can become more intense when you realize how much money you or your company paid for this conference. So, you start browsing some networking tips. You learned and you did it. Back home, after the conference, with lots of business cards, new contacts on Linkedin and follow up emails. But after several months, you entirely lose contact. Here are some strategic points to change this game:

1)   Build a list of goals pre-conference

Build a list of goals answering these questions: Whom do you want to meet? Why is this person important for your work? What do you need to learn or to share? Why do you want to attend this meeting? Future job opportunities or improve your research with new ideas?

Now, you are going to speak with people that can truly make a difference in your goals. In this way, you are going to make meaningful connections.


2)   Find things in common

Having something in common with a person is one of the most effective ways to maintain a relationship. After attending a conference you are going have good reasons to keep in contact with someone. Also, during the meeting you can vary between business and personal conversation and this can strength a relation. People are more willing to recommend and do business with someone they can trust and have a valid rapport.


3)   Listen actively

Do you listen or merely wait to talk? Good listening involves paying close attention to what is said, asking the other party how they feel about their work and why they are attending this convention. Focus on this.  The common mistake in a conversation is to be thinking about what you are going to say instead of listening. You will be able to know more about the person and increase the potential to maintain active communication later.


  4) Write notes 

Chances are you will forget the details of conversations especially in the Conventions environment.  Therefore you need to write notes. During the conference take some time before go to sleep to write down the following: whom you have met, their names, interests, emails and how they are related to your goals. This valuable data will help you to remain in contact.


5)   Be bold when talking about your interests

Being relevant and highlighting your professional interests is going to help you for future contacts. Showing your passion is a good way to make others become an advocate for your cause. When someone you have met reads about your “cause” they may be more likely to send an email, or recommend you in case of a new opportunity.

Now, let’s go back to you

Send us your success or failure stories that might teach or help others. A111 is excited to hear from you.


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