Maybe you've been there before. You're in one of those ubiquitous "networking events", in a room full of people who want the same thing that you do: professional connections. And the only way to get those connections is to put yourself out there, introduce yourself to people you don't know, make small-talk, and find out who's who. It's the in-person equivalent of cold-calling, except with drinks and business cards.
And if you don't use the time you've been given in an effective manner, you could very easily fritter away this valuable opportunity. So given the time crunch, the limited resources at your disposal, and the hordes of other people at this event hoping to do the exact same thing as you, here are some tips to owning your next networking event:
1. Memorable Pitch
You've rehearsed your elevator pitch enough to know your story like the back of your hand. But if it sounds too much like the pitch that everyone else at this event is giving, you'll just end up blending in with the crowd.
Have a couple of memorable little morsels or anecdotes in your back pocket to help people remember you. It won't just help you stand out, but it might pique someone's interest and start an interesting conversation. Stories about interesting community or extracurricular experiences, world travel, or unusual pastimes might be a good starting point.