Amybeth Hale – Research Goddess

Some Travel Tips for Social Networkers
March 5, 2008, 6:23 pm
Filed under: Networking/Social Media | Tags:

It’s not a big surprise for me to say that I love to travel! Anyone who reads my blog on a semi-regular basis knows that I love going to new places, and I regularly get emails from friends asking me where in the world I am this week! When I am traveling, I also like to put my networks to work for me and meet people with whom I’ve already connected on a social network along the way. For all those social networking fans out there who also enjoy venturing out into the great wide open, here are a couple of tips I’ve learned on my travels for making the most out of your time on the road. 

  • Always check your network before you leave to see who lives in or near the city/cities you plan to visit, and reach out to them. If you can plan your trip far enough in advance, try to reach out to your network at least 1 ½ – 2 weeks prior to your arrival. That way people can put a meeting in their schedule.
  • If you have airport layovers, schedule coffee meetings with one or two people in the airport. If you have a planned layover of 2+ hours, make the most of your time and invite someone in that city to have a cup of coffee with you. If you know more than one, invite a couple of people who share similar interests. These can be some of the best rap sessions as you’re on a time schedule and will cram as much into the conversation as possible. This is in fact how I first met Dan Sweet in Houston, and Jim Stroud in Atlanta for the first time face to face! (BTW, I have an upcoming layover in MINNEAPOLIS, Mr. Paul DeBettignies!!!)
  • Do your homework on your connections. Chances are, if you’re a heavy networker, you don’t know everyone personally. For those you don’t know as well, learn a little tidbit about them, something that will help spark a conversation. Find a common interest that you share. After all, meeting your network contacts in person will deepen your relationship, but only if you show some interest in doing so!
  • Organize an informal (or formal, if you prefer!) get-together, and ask your local network contacts to recommend a good place that can accommodate a group and has an atmosphere conducive to conversation (they probably know the area better than you!). Trying to meet up in a smoky dive won’t allow you to converse with ease and may be more a cause of frustration! Make sure also to pick somewhere that is easily accessible with ample parking.
  • Items to stick in your carry-on or to have on you when you meet people:
    • Business cards – duh.
    • A notepad – you never know when you’ll catch a golden nugget in a conversation. Make sure you have a pen handy too.
    • Digital camera – it’s always cool to snap a picture with a network connection you’re meeting for the first time!
    • Video camera – why not record your conversation? You can turn it into a great vlog post            .
  • And finally – follow up your encounters with a THANK YOU email, call, or snail-mail note when you return home. This puts a nice cap on the new friendship you’ve started and will keep the lines of communication open. Who knows what will happen from there!

And for the researchers, sourcers, and recruiters out there, this is a great opportunity to find out from your contacts where they are in their careers. Meet them on their home turf if you happen to be in the area. Sometimes, an in-person meeting is what is needed to warm up a potential candidate. Happy Networking on the road!


1 Comment so far
Leave a comment

How did I miss your post?

Did I miss the layover too?

Comment by MN Headhunter/Paul DeBettignies

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