Much is said about networking these days. It is important to cultivate professional relationships for a successful future. But what is the real importance and usefulness of an extended network? And how can you improve your networking?
By Cíntia Costa
The action of “Networking” can be translated as a proactive work in establishing contacts and creating stronger professional relationships with the aim of creating a direct connection with people who have a professional interest for your business or your personal marketing.
Therefore, there is always a professional objective behind this activity, which is increasingly enhanced by events and meetups for that purpose, whether in specific areas, such as the VR / AR Meetup that takes place monthly at LISPOLIS, or generalized, such as end-of-day events promoted by Beta-i.
Networking can be seen as the fastest way to leverage business, by reaching people with whom you can establish partnerships or who may even become your next customers. There are, therefore, several advantages to working with your circle of contacts and gradually expanding it, but it will not be productive to do it blindly.
The ideal way is to design a prior plan, in which you can explore the goals to be reached and the best way to get there. This is mainly because nowadays there is no shortage of offers, with several events that aim to promote the meeting of strangers to create new connections, but in reality not all of these connections will bear fruit.
To focus on what is really important, you can set your priorities up and start participating in thematic events, for example dedicated to your business sector. You will also be able to discover who is the person of greatest reference in the sector of your interest, which usually is a natural aggregator of professional contacts and could be the opening door for many other people who can help your company to grow.
What is the role of incubators in networking?
Incubators have always actively promoted networking, since they have always argued that cooperation is the best way to achieve any goal set. It is part of the core of any incubator to help the business grow, and the best way to do so is through the sharing of knowledge and contacts that can bring added value to the company, startup, project or even idea.
That is why incubators like LISPOLIS already have a wide network of contacts in different areas and can help the company to find the ideal partner for each need.
And how can the Web Summit help?
The Web Summit is the perfect opportunity to meet new people in the industry you are looking for. If you are going to participate in the event, do your homework and find out which companies and people in your area of interest will be present. Within the enclosure, startups are identified by sector of activity, which may facilitate demand. However, if you do not plan your agenda in advance, you may not be able to meet your goals, since more than 60 thousand participants are expected and the atmosphere experienced in this mega conference can be frantic and overwhelming. To find out how to prepare, you can review this LISPOLIS article.
However, if you are not going to participate in the event, you can still enjoy all the surroundings and the excitement that is generated by the arrival of countless professionals from other countries for the event. Explore the side events, many of them free, and talk to as many people as possible, as one of them can be the gateway to the growth of your company nationally or even internationally.
Here is a list of some side events, taking place from 4 to 8 November:
You can discover all the events at Startup Portugal.