Like a Boss.
I hope you enjoyed your time in Houston. I also hoped you met, networked with and connected with a lot of female technologists! This week is follow up week AKA the most important week of the year.
Don’t let all of that networking go to waste.
First thing is first- let’s find those business cards you stashed away. Hopefully, you have them together if not, time to fish them out of every notepad, card holder and bag you had around you.
Secondly-the sorting begins! Go on and dig out that sorting hat. I found it helpful to have a few piles. The connectors,the influencers, the potential mentors and the networkers.
- The networkers— those who I’d love to have in my network. The people who make this list are generally people who are in different fields or have various levels of experience.
- The influencers— the influencers typically were the speakers or those whom I aspired to be. Some of my influencers include people like Megan Smith, Jo Miller, Nora Denzel and of course Sheryl Sandberg.
- The potential mentors— those who I look up to and feel I could learn from.
- The connectors— the connectors tend to be social butterflies. They know the inner workings of Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn and they know everyone.
(Note: Sometimes people can fit into one or more pile and that’s cool too)
All of these people will play a key role in your network and it is important to recognize which pile they belong to so you can approach them correctly. Every person is different and each email should bridge both what they are good at and what kind of relationship you are looking to establish.
Third- Establish the connection. A lot of times, their business cards will have their preferred contact. This can be anything from Twitter handles to personal emails. Armed with that info., it’s time to make contact!
3 (and a halfsies)
Probably the most difficult yet most important part of this entire thing.
Emails or LinkedIn are actually one of the easiest ways of getting in contact with someone. Things to include are:
- A reintroduction of yourself
- A quick note as to where you met/what you were doing when you exchanged information at #GHC15 (I say this because it is conference season so sometimes- people will leave one conference and jet off to the next)
- What you are looking to gain from your new found connection
- Thank them for their time and finally
- Wish them well.
So they love to tweet
You have a 140 characters to make an impression so go for it! I dig deep and get creative. Emojis are your friend, insert tiny snippets of your conversation or if you really just can’t; DM is the way to go.
Fourth Keep the spirit going. You’ve made the initial contact-great! Don’t let them forget you! No this doesn’t mean you have to have weekly emails but drop them a line (or tweet) once in a while to check in. Maintaining a relationship with your new connection isn’t hard but it is pivotal in networking.