A couple of weekends ago, I went along to my first ever Instameet. I had never heard of Instameets before – but apparently they’re all the rage on Instagram.
As the link with Instagram might suggest, an Instameet is an opportunity for photographers to get together. I described it to my friends as being a bit like a flashmob for introverts – a group of people gathers in one place, blends in to the background, then one by one, they suddenly start taking photographs!
As an introvert, I no longer go to “business” networking events, because they tend to be full of people who are desperate to sell you something! Instead, I either join communities, like the Inspired Entrepreneurs Community, an authentic business community run by Nick Williams, or I try to meet people in situations where we share a common interest or goal.
Something like the Instameet, for example, is a great way for introverts to meet up, because you have a common purpose – on this occasion, our purpose was to walk the “yellow line” route through the Barbican and take photos along the way. Conversation was optional, and there were plenty of introverts to compare camera equipment with!
I really enjoyed myself – despite being a bit nervous, beforehand, about not knowing everyone – and I met some lovely people. OK, so I didn’t sell anything. But that’s not the point.
The point of any networking is to make contact with people who you would like to meet again in the future, so that you can start to build a relationship with them. A friendship. And even if what you do isn’t of interest to them personally, they will be more inclined to tell their other friends about you.
What sort of introvert-friendly networking events could you attend, where you can enjoy the company of like-minded people without being bombarded by sales talk?