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Speed Networking Tips
 

For the third year, INTA is offering Speed Networking in the Exhibition Hall. Speed Networking is an ideal way to find new business associates and expand your network, bringing people together to exchange contact details and business information. Bring your business card–and smile!

Use these helpful hints to maximize your Speed Networking session.

Who should attend: New and non-members, first time attendees or Annual Meeting veterans interested in making new contacts.

Develop an efficient way to introduce yourself.

  • You may consider developing an "elevator pitch", or a response you would give in any situation when someone asks you who you are or what you do.
  • Think about how you want to describe yourself. You could talk about your current position, what you want to do, or describe your goals for 2012.
  • You may consider letting the other person talk first. This way, if there are any common areas that you want to expand on, you can then adapt your pitch accordingly.
  • Remember you only have six minutes to make your first impression, so make sure it is a good one.

Contribute to an effective conversation.

  • Do not be afraid to open the conversation with simple and safe questions such as ‘how long have you been a member of INTA?’ and ‘where are you from?’
  • Once you have started to build rapport, transition to more business-related questions.
  • Make sure there is an even exchange of dialogue. Pose a question or point and let the other person respond.
  • Establish the other person’s challenges and needs in their organization or industry; this will likely reveal a great deal about his/her business needs and establish common ground.
  • Ask open-ended questions to engage the other person. Questions that elicit more than one-word answers will gain you more information.
  • Ask more specific questions to get more specific answers.
  • English may not be the person’s first language, so please remember to speak slowly and clearly, or converse in a common language.

Bring and distribute your business cards.

  • Exchange cards at the beginning of the session; it can be a time saver.
  • When you exchange cards take time to read what is on the other person's card. The other person will see this as interest on your part and, most importantly, it will help you remember faces and names at a later date.
  • Make sure to bring a pen to write notes on business cards collected so you will be reminded after the event of who you have met and what action is required.
  • Organize your business cards effectively. Have a place to put business cards you collect and a separate place to keep your own business cards.

Follow up with individuals with whom you made a connection.

  • If you feel that there is the possibility of furthering a relationship with a contact, make it clear.  Be direct and let them know that you would like to have another meeting or follow-up call, and propose a date and time.
  • If you are registered for multiple sessions, be prepared that you may encounter the same person.  This is another opportunity to expand on your initial conversation and build further rapport.
  • The key to making the most of Speed Networking is to follow up with your contacts over time to develop credible business relationships.

Registration will be onsite, but there is no fee to attend. Each session will last one hour and we will need a one-hour commitment from each participant. Admittance is on a first-come, first-served basis and once capacity is reached, participants will be asked to return for a different session time.

Speed Networking Hours:

Sunday, May 5: 2:00 pm–3:00 pm
Monday, May 6:10:30–11:30 am, 12:00–1:00 pm, 1:30–2:30 pm, and 3:00–4:00 pm
Tuesday, May 7: 10:30–11:30 am, 12:00–1:00 pm, 1:30–2:30 pm, and 3:00–4:00 pm
Wednesday, May 8: 10:30–11:30 am and 12:00–1:00 pm