“No elevator speeches! We talk to each other like normal people do.”
Meg and Mi met at a networking event although both don’t actually remember meeting each other, unfortunately a typical result of many networking events where you are left with not much more than the business cards you collect and vague memory of superficial conversation.
While sorting through the numerous business cards I collected that day, I found myself drawn to Meg’s card (actually it was a fridge magnet!) with its lovely yin yang symbol. As I couldn’t recall anything about Meg, I thought I would have a look at her website to see if it would jog my memory. That was when I discovered that the “.au” was missing on the magnet. I decided to write to Meg to let her know, knowing that if the situation were reversed, I would have appreciated the same.
It was my first networking expo and I was sharing a table with a colleague. So many people passed by, but as a “newby” it was my perception that it was more business to business rather than making connections with each other for true referral. I was surprised to receive an email a couple of days later from Mi and very grateful she had noticed the missing “au” on my promotional material – as an ex-teacher it was a little embarrassing to realize that I had not picked up the mistake earlier!
They decided to catch up over coffee and found that they really connected. One of the things that they had in common was the frustration and disappointment of the various networking events that they had been attending. They felt that the sense of community was missing, that many events were commercial in nature, and networking for short term gain was inadvertently being encouraged at the expense of long term relationship building.
That was when the idea of Monday Connections surfaced, a networking group that didn’t require any commitment, membership fees, whose sole purpose was the opportunity to network the way women naturally network. Their goal was to provide a safe space for women in micro and small businesses to not only network, but to share and learn from each other.