Program Perspective: The Networking Dance

By Wendy Meluch

Wow! If you missed Anne Rowe's recent blog post, Don’t Hesitate, Speed Date!, go back and check it out. She is a cheerleader for networking at the Western Museums Association (WMA), or any meeting filled with like-minded people. Anne gives loads of examples of how to make connections with your colleagues in different conference situations. She completely makes the case for attending conferences where we can meet with each other face-to-face. Thanks, Anne!

Some of us have an easy time joining the networking dance, others need to learn the steps, practice, and get a pep talk. Two years ago, while helping with the WMA Annual Meeting evaluation, I saw that many people commented on the survey about not knowing how to network. That's why I initially suggested that we have a Networking 101 session.

This year, Networking 101 takes place during the 2014 Annual Meeting on Sunday, October 4, 2014 at 4:00 pm (immediately before the FREE Opening Reception where you can practice your new networking skills). This highly interactive mini-workshop will give you many helpful tips about how to prepare for and navigate a networking event. We’ll cover lots of practical information, such as your "elevator speech," how to join a conversation and shaking hands. We'll also look at personal qualities, which naturally lend themselves to good networking technique. So-called introverts and extroverts both have strengths and challenges when it comes to making connection with other people.

Participants at the WMA 2014 Annual Meeting Networking Workshop

Networking 101 includes plenty of opportunities to practice your networking skills with friendly colleagues in a safe, lighthearted environment. This session is always filled with laughter; participants leave it feeling relaxed and confident about meeting new people.

Networking 101 is open to everyone and is FREE. If you are an experienced networker, come join us and share your tips for success too!

While the 2014 Annual Meeting may be happening in Vegas, what you gain in Networking 101 shouldn't stay there. You'll benefit from networking tools and experience anywhere you go.

Looking forward to helping you join the Networking Dance!

PS: The choreography isn’t that hard.

As Principal of Visitor Studies Services, Wendy Meluch enjoys tackling a wide range of evaluation research questions with an equally wide variety of educational leisure centers. She is currently working with the Exploratorium, The Bishop Museum, The Buffalo Bill Center of the West, and Chabot Space & Science Center. In seventeen years of consulting, Wendy has spoken with thousands of museum visitors and professionals. She has presented internationally about visitor studies and evaluation. In addition to the Networking 101 Session, Wendy will be a featured speaker in WestMusings.

Wendy holds an MA in Museum Studies from San Francisco State University, and BA's in Anthropology and Business Management, and a Certificate of Latin American Studies from Michigan State University.



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Just want to see if you are a robot.