Hello again, budding professional networkers! It’s your favorite networker, Montes McCarron, here to talk to you some more about places you can network that you would have never even thought of forming connections.
A few weeks ago, I was trying to meet up with a Toronto personal injury lawyer after I had some back pain after a car accident. It turned out that my back pain wasn’t anything I needed a lawyer for after I saw a physician, but since I was in Toronto anyway, I figured I would see the sights a little bit and see how many new people I could meet. Remember, meeting new people is the key to successful networking. It’s all about who you know and who you have a connection with.
The problem was that I came up to Toronto on my own and didn’t really have any contacts in the city. So, I felt almost like one of you, just starting off in the world again. I had booked a hotel for a couple of days thinking I would need time to meet with an attorney, but since I had to cancel, I figured I wouldn’t waste the opportunity I had or the money I spent on the non-refundable room.
I tried to chat with people out at a couple of restaurants, and while the people of Toronto are certainly friendly, meeting people with little influence doesn’t do much for your career, as pleasant as they may be. I’ll be honest, I found it incredibly difficult to meet anyone who might have connections that would be beneficial to me, professionally. I needed to unwind, so I took a drive to Mississauga, where they were holding a yoga class at the Art Gallery.
I personally love yoga, and I figured this venue would at least be better than your run-of-the-mill yoga studio. It honestly did not disappoint. The artwork surrounding us was beautiful and it was absolutely worth the drive. At the end, you get a chance to drink a smoothie and enjoy some snacks, so I walked around chatting and ended up meeting an executive for a Fortune 500 company who took the yoga class on her lunch break.
The key in all this is to remain determined. You never know who knows who or where you’ll meet someone to connect with. Keep your options open and don’t let a bunch of failed opportunities get you down.