The cardinal rule of networking: Bring a winglady

On April 22, 2012 by Alison
If you go to a network event where you do not bring a winglady this is what may happen:

 

- You will try not to go. Even if it’s been (lightly) pencilled in for weeks, you will find some reason not to plunge into that thicket of suits and it-takes-alot-of-money-to-look-this-casual outfits.
- You will start reminding yourself that you know NOBODY going, and really who needs them anyways…
- You’ll start whining. And nobody likes whiners, especially your boyfriend, who will kick you out of the apartment and you’ll find yourself calling up all your friends for a last-minute coffee date as you regretfully cycle towards the event.
- And okay, let’s say you get there. It’s gonna be awkward to break the ice. With a cluster of people speaking in Danish. And the later in the event you go, the more people will have clumped, and you don’t even know who to start with and and and
- You’ll check your phone alot.
- You’ll visit the bathroom alot to check your makeup.
- You’ll take great, great interest in whatever brochures / printed material they have available.
- An argument will begin in your head, as you remind yourself that you haaaaate networking because to you, to network is not a verb you enjoy. And you do not go to events that allot time for this verb. And at this point you leave.

 

But really, you broke the cardinal rule of networking from the start. It’s totally straightforward: Bring a winglady.

 

This is so obvious and yet I always assume I’m going to ace the event alone. Which is crazy, because I’m not the type who usually goes to parties where I won’t know anyone, so why do I assume that sober-ish suit-and-tie events would be any better?

When you bring a winglady, this may happen instead:

 

- You can meet up before and chat about what you’re expectations are. Decide upon a time you want to leave together, so you don’t worry about an exit strategy. Plus you’ll arrive together.
- You’re two people. Odds are you’ll bump into more people than if you went solo.
- Introducing eachother is way, way lovelier than just rambling off about yourself.
- Those first awkward minutes vanish. Hello! – you’re already there with somebody who’s interesting to catch up with.
- She can tell you if your mascara’s smudged
- It’ll probably be fun. Or even if it’s dorky or horrible or boring, you can joke about it later.
- You’ve got freedom! Split up and check in with eachother as the event goes on.
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3 Responses to “The cardinal rule of networking: Bring a winglady”

  • Camilla

    I can’t believe how spot on this post really is. I can relate to every single point you’re making. And I couldn’t help but laught when you brought up the thing about whining and boyfriends, haha. Happened to me just too many times.

Trackbacks & Pings

  • Scale Angel | Starting up away from home says:

    [...] Building a network the serves you Everyone is always going on about the importance of a strong network when starting up… But what should you do when you’re a newbie and, well, don’t have a network to speak of? I think that people focus a little too much on professional networks, when thinking about this dilemma, which can be hard to establish when you are doing it solo. [...]

  • Starting Up Away from Home | Expat in Denmark Blog says:

    [...] Building a network the serves you Everyone is always going on about the importance of a strong network when starting up… But what should you do when you’re a newbie and, well, don’t have a network to speak of? I think that people focus a little too much on professional networks, when thinking about this dilemma, which can be hard to establish when you are doing it solo. [...]

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