Last weekend I attended the amazing When Words Collide Festival in Calgary and it was a great reminder of the importance of networking.
Most often when we think of networking it is viewed as a means to finding a job or making sales. But there are other reasons to network.
Let me begin by defining networking. If it isn’t for job hunting or sales, what do I mean? Networking in this context means attending conferences, workshops, and social events, meeting new people and reacquainting yourself with old ones.
So often with our busy schedules of work and family commitments, we find our social circles narrowing and our connections with others not in our immediate workplace diminishing.
Stepping out to a conference, workshop, or attending social events has a few benefits:
1. Attending workshops challenges you in new ways, stimulating your creativity, innovation, and beliefs.
2. Attending conferences exposes you to what is new in your area of interest or your career, again stimulating creativity and re-inspiring you to refocus your efforts at work.
3. They allow you to interact with others you haven’t seen in a while, meaning you can rebuild and strengthen those relationships.
4. Is there anything as enjoyable as sharing something you love with others who enjoy it as much as you?
5. You will feel energized and refreshed when you return to your regularly scheduled routine.
6. You never know what opportunities might arise from these connections and challenges. Maybe an enjoyable dinner, life-long friendship, and adventure.
What other benefits do you received from networking?