More than 4,000 leaders in the convention industry will cultivate creative moments in Vancouver next week at Convening Leaders 2016. If you’re one of them, chances are you’re also hoping to cultivate some new connections, too. Before you head to British Columbia, here are four simple tips to help you maximize your face-to-face time with some of the most respected names in meetings.
1) Send out your appointment invitations now.
Don’t just count on meeting new people in networking receptions and shaking hands in between sessions. Browse the complete attendee list, and send notes to anyone you’re hoping to connect with during the conference.
2) Don’t delay downloading the mobile app.
I know the routine: download the app once you land in the host city. However, the new Convening Leaders mobile app has all kinds of tools you’ll want to use long before you’re in Vancouver. With the ability to browse through attendees, integrate with your own social media and much more, early activity on the app will give you a head start on meeting, greeting and making new friends. Download it through the Apple Store or the Google Play Store, and complete your own profile today.
3) Networking doesn’t have to wait until the night.
Happy hour in the hotel bar and structured receptions are good places to strike up casual conversations. However, this year’s Convening Leaders offers a range of alternative Being Your Best networking opportunities that don’t involve food or beverages. With yoga classes on Monday and Wednesday mornings and the Light Up the Run Fun Run/Race Walk on Tuesday, you can introduce yourself to new friends before you even eat breakfast.
4) Come with some conversation-starters.
After the “so where are you from?” and “what do you think of the conference so far?” small talk, it’s essential to have some more meaningful questions. Find out what your new contacts are hoping to achieve in the new year. Ask them which technologies are playing a crucial role in their organization’s success. Tell them which trends matter most to you. If you can create a conversation worth remembering, you may be able to turn a business card into a new business relationship.
Looking for tips to make your own meeting a better place to network? Check out this article for some strong advice.