Posted by Pete DeMola on 21. Sep 2009
WLIB: What's Speed Networking?
Peter Walters: Speed Networking is a fun and creative way to introduce yourselves to others and achieve your business goals. Whether its finding a job, finding an employee or finding more business, the platform helps you streamline the finding process so that you're always getting results.
WLIB: So, the platform is similar to Speed Dating?
PW: No, it's quite different. During the actual activity there's no one-on-one interaction. What you're doing is pitching to small groups of, say, 5-8. They're listening intently to what you're saying, and they hand you a Speed Networking feedback form that says either "See me," or "I can introduce you to someone." Then you run off to the next group of 5-8 and repeat your pitch.
WLIB: Do people actually make those introductions?
PW: You'd be surprised. Everyone comes into these events with a very positive "do it now" attitude and with a willingness to help each other out. By being unselfish, everyone generates good leads and gets what they want.
WLIB: Any success stories?
PW: Yes, all the time. Here's an interesting one. A few years ago I attended a Speed Networking event in Los Angeles, and someone was going around, saying, "I need access to Mohammed Ali." And it turned out someone in the room knew someone who knew someone who got him access to Mohammed Ali. Speed Networking's motto is, "It's not who you know, it's who they know." And if everyone adopts that attitude, and is willing to help each other out, then true networking begins, not just random pairing.
WLIB: So everyone is just running around shouting?
PW: Hardly. There's a very structured, ordered way that Speed Networking events are run. There's a welcome and introduction where the rules are explained. Then everyone develops their 30-second pitch into a single, coherent, communicable concept. Then the speed networking activity begins, which lasts 5-8 rounds of 3 minutes each. And after that, people are free to mix and mingle.
WLIB: Give us an example of a 30-second pitch.
PW: "I need an English speaking senior partner in a Chinese language software development firm. Who do you know?"
WLIB: That's not even 10 seconds.
PW: Even better.
WLIB: What if I'm just looking for a job?
PW: "I have a BA and ten years experience in graphic design. I'm looking for full-time work, preferably near Jianwai Soho. Who do you know?"
WLIB: And people will help you?
WLIB: Why would they do that?
PW: Because real networking has long-term, reciprocal value. Other events only succeed in pairing people one-to-one. "What do you do? Oh, I'm not interested. See you later." But Speed Networking extends several tiers. And if you make one introduction and connect two people, you've got two potential favors coming your way. You can always call up that food and beverage manager you helped last April and see if she knows any good wine distributors. But it's not enough to simply have their business card. If you've actually done them a favor in the past, they won't forget that. They'll remember you, they'll know all about you, and they'll be ready to help. That's networking.
Peter Walters: 快速社交是一种有趣的和新颖的方式，目的在于向他人介绍自己，并实现自己的商业目的。无论是找工作，或是招聘，又或是寻求更多的生意机会，该平台可以帮助您简化过程，以便发现你所需要的。
PW: 不是这样的， 两者有着很大的不同。活动当中没有一对一的互动时间， 你要做的就是面对一个小团体，大概5-8个人。他们会认真聆听你的表述，然后会递给你一份完成的快速社交反馈，上面或者写着"迟些单独聊"，或者"我能把你介绍给某人"。 接着，你向下一个小团体表述你的意愿。
Although no events are currently scheduled, keep your eyes on this space for more information.
Translation courtesy of WLIB user Vinnie.
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