Networking in person, especially in the winter, can be a struggle. When I saw this event on Eventbrite, an event management website, I thought I would give it a shot since I am interested in fashion and would like to meet others with similar interests here in Ottawa.
Not expecting the pouring rain, I still hustled myself over to the venue by myself and am glad I did. I was a bit nervous at first, since there weren’t too many people there and everyone seemed to already be in friend groups. The loud music didn’t help things.
However, luckily I found another girl who was also there by herself and sat near her. We got to talking after a little while, both glad to have someone to talk to and get to know!
Surprisingly, she was also in communications and we had a lot in common that we could discuss. I got her contact details (Instagram) and we plan on talking more later this week.
“You have to use what you have.”
When I was telling her all about my networking in London and how much more fun it was over there in comparison to Ottawa, she told me something that made me think which was about using what you have.
She made me rethink how I view Ottawa, and realize that there is a place for fashion and ingenuity in my home city. I always like to have new perspectives so I really appreciated that comment.
What is different from in person events is all the preparation that is involved. I definitely spent a while planning what I was going to wear that would fit the ambiguous ‘dress to impress’ dress code.
After googling what to wear to a networking event, and what a ‘mixer’ even was, I settled on this hopefully chic look to the left.
The amount of effort it takes to look effortless is exhausting sometimes. The icing on the cake was being complimented not on my outfit, but the highlighter (makeup) on my face. Such is life!
I was also able to see the guest list on Facebook. After scanning through, I found a designer whom I didn’t see at the event but thought was cool so I sent her a message on Instagram.
You never know, maybe we’ll meet up some time as well! A mix between in person and online networking is key.
Overall, I am definitely glad that I went to this event and will go to more in the future when I can. I got out of my comfort zone and made a worthwhile connection. The Ottawa Fashion Network also reposted my snippet of their event, so I’m on their radar now as well which is great.
If that wasn’t enough, networking in person leads to some great appetizers! It’s rude to not eat the free food.
What kind of networking is more your style? Let me know in the comments!