Are you looking at my socks?
I have been in Austin for two days now at SXSWedu and I am thoroughly impressed. I can tell you at this point it is an overload of awesomeness. The sessions, people and the crazy good Trailer Trash taco from Torchy's. ( Yes I left the conference for lunch. You do not come to Austin without getting some eats.) All of these things come together to create a truly engaging experience.
However, lets call a spade a spade, the most important thing at any conference, I have been told and now experienced is NETWORKING. I don't do numbers but I know there are a crap ton of people here and we all want the same thing, connections and knowledge.
The day is full of intros...Hi, what do you? Where are you from? but come on whats the real reason we make those introductions? If we are going to be adults here we all know that we want something from each other. That is ok, nothing is more powerful than sharing stories. It can be as simple as sharing a twitter handle to continue conversation or looking for partnerships on an upcoming education reform project.
We may be from all over the world but we all have one thing in common, THE ASK., we all have one. If you dont have an ASK incorporated into every introduction you are wasting each others time.
In a see of people with ask you have to be memorable. That is the key to success here. It is standing out just enough to make someone remember you. It can be something as small as the clothes you have on.
I jumped in the elevator a while ago and a lady said she saw my socks and has been wanting to talk all day. MY SOCKS! I will admit they are pretty dope but think about it, she experienced so much today and met so many people but remembered my socks and as a result that compeled her to want to call me out in crowded elevator. That is freaking awesome! The rest is up to me to build that relationship.
Make every introduction memorable. Take every measure possible to leave an impact on someone so that you may both make an impact on this world.
That is the power of SXSWedu, networking to make an impact.
The question is will you leave Thursday with a bunch of business cards and new Twitter followers or with cultivated relationships. ( Dont worry you can have the Twitter followers regardless.) Speaking of @jeremy_bay
HOW TO NETWORK AT #SXSWedu
1. STAND OUT
2. KNOW YOUR STORY AND YOUR ASK
3. FOLLOW UP, NO ONE HERE HAS TIME FOR YOU EMPTY PROMISES
See ya all tomorrow!
Ps. I already got the sock game on lock gotta find something else.