Yes! It would be silly not to consider that as an option if you hate attending live networking events.  The best solution is often the most simple solution.

You have 3 choices when considering whether to attend live events.

  1. Don’t go to a networking event.
  2. Go to the networking event you hate or
  3. Attend and participate in a networking event where you find enjoyment.

The point here it’s a choice.

I’ve met far too many people that complain about networking events and believe they HAVE to go.  That madness stops now.  It’s one of the very first things we address in the core mastery course: Becoming A Masterful Networker.

If you’re set on attending live events…

One thing to consider right now is avoid generic networking events.

Listen to the lesson that Dave Clarke, CTO (Chief Technology Officer) of the American Red Cross reveals.

Dave is the president of the Washington Area CTO Roundtable, Inc., a group that meets bi-monthly to discuss technology topics. “This forum is effective for networking because it is not a networking forum,” says Clarke. “Its purpose is technology education, but because the members have common interests, we wind up developing a good network.”

His advice to Chief Information Officers (or ANY group of people with something in common) in search of something similar?

“Look for events that have specific topics of interest as opposed to general networking,” he says. “Once you’ve joined, listen to those members whose opinions you find most interesting. Decide to make contact with only a few, exchange business cards and follow up on that specific topic.” Members of the Roundtable call each other to compare notes on technology topics that are relevant to their businesses, not just to have lunch.

Another tip from Dave: “CIOs might want to take a look at LinkedIN, an online networking tool,” he says. “It is fun to use and because it is a technology tool, technology executives might be more inclined to use it.”

Did you get the lesson from this example?

a) Attending networking events IS a choice.

b) If you DO go, then go to one SPECIFIC to something you enjoy.

What are your thoughts on this?

P.S.  To leverage the time you invest at live networking events, check out Day 2 of Becoming A Masterful Networker