March 11, 2014

How to Get the Most out of Networking Events

By: Nigel Ashford

Events like receptions, lectures, and conferences are the best places to network.

Here are some ideas on how to successfully network there:

  • Attend as many events as possible, as early as possible.
  • Decide which are of most value to you.
  • Identify who you want to meet there.
  • Ask a question, give your name, and talk to speakers. Ask a question that will be of interest to others in the audience, and don’t just give a long diatribe about your favorite hobbyhorse.
  • Socialize. Attend any reception before or after the event. Introduce yourself and others. Do not just hang around with the people you already know.
  • Organize your own event, such as a reading group, a lecture, or a dinner party.
  • Follow-up post event, contacting people that might be of value.

This advice is excerpted from the IHS’ Creating Your Path to a Public Policy Career guide. Click the image below to view the guide.


Dr. Nigel Ashford
 is Senior Program Officer at the Institute for Humane Studies