It is always a good thing to find people who are of the same line of work but tracking them down in the first place seems to be tough. Amanda Haddaway writes for Careerealism magazine:
You’ve just attended a great networking event where you met a ton of great contacts. Now what?
Many people attend networking events and then don’t act on the great contacts they met.
London’s highly competitive atmosphere does present opportunities to network with new client leads and partnerships while bringing more traffic to your business. Some companies laud the nation’s capital as the world’s leading financial and cultural centre that offers a bustling transport system and a favourable climate for startup firms. If you have a business that wants to expand contacts and explore new ideas, a company like BNI London can be your bridge for networking events around London.
Even if there were invites to a networking event arranged for you, don’t sit in a corner and let the other attendees come to you. Muster up the confidence to greet them but if they’re in any conversation, time it right so it would not appear to them that you’re crashing their talk.
If you are able to join the talk, make the effort to listen and share what you know. Haddaway suggests temporarily setting aside any personal stances in order to better connect with your potential contacts.
Foster and Foster Anew
Haddaway says that you stand to have better recall among your new contacts if they gave you a business card and you responded within a full day after the event. They can appreciate your effort and professionalism, especially if you thanked them for a chat during the initial meet and assured them you will call them back. You may categorise the business cards you collected into priority bunches.
More Meet and Greet
A company like BNI can keep you abreast of other potential networking events in London, even if their main thrust is only peripherally connected to yours. Take that as an opportunity to review the things that worked at the last event you attended, and build up on what worked for the next event.
(Source: Top 5 Tips To Successfully Attend A Networking Event, Careerealism, 28 August 2014)