Be Quick to Listen, But Not Slow to Speak

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The fast-paced speed networking event, Direct Connect, encourages participants to fine tune their elevator pitches for a 3-minute opportunity to make a one-on-one connection.

After a successful year of staging strategic connections at Direct Connect by pre-assigning seats based on attendees’ mutual selections, the Garland Chamber staff decided to pick up the pace of traditional networking. The event went through a series of calculated transformations, trading room-roaming participants for face-to-face seating and swapping small talk for immediate engagement.

The event on March 21, 2013 launched the exciting new format and it’s been a favorite ever since. Upon arrival, attendees begin to fill seats positioned directly across from a partner. The emcee, Chamber President Karina Olivares, rings a bell to kick off conversation. A quick three minutes later, the outer row of participants shifts just one seat to left and the clock begins to count down again.

“Meeting with area connectors like those who attend Direct Connect gives me the opportunity to build rapport and trust.  That rapport and trust goes a long way towards making connections BEYOND the room.  Direct Connect has allowed me to introduce myself and my business to a wide variety of people I wouldn't otherwise have met.”

Trey Finley, ActionCOACH

The Chamber staff’s goal in offering a new type of networking is simple: to encourage local professionals to communicate clearly their value proposition. With a little practice, tongue-tied introductions and vague company descriptions become a thing of the past. As in real-life business encounters, in speed networking, there’s no time to waste. Event attendees have claimed vast improvement in their networking skills and consistently come prepared with relevant questions and a sharp focus on their goals for the morning.

Attend the next event

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