Networking for Introverts/Ambiverts - How?

I've been networking a lot lately, mostly 1:1s which is what I'm quite comfortable with and I love it. I love meeting people from different walks of life and hearing their stories and learning about the different perspectives. But there are networking events with bigger crowds, and though I kinda-sorta-really want to go, the idea of it gives me so much anxiety that I hesitate to even purchase the tickets.

Extroverts and networking experts, how do ya'll do it?!

Remember; In a big event, you're still only talking to one person at a time; and people aren't likely to try and overhear your conversation!You can ask if they have a few minutes to step aside and talk longer, or to exchange details for later.
This is good to keep in mind. Thank you!
I'm also an ambivert + can get overwhelmed in these spaces. check out this video: about attracting people to you. I love to turn on my magical aura + let people come to me. also, cut down the conversation + just say something like "hey I'm Roxy, I'd love to learn about you + see how we might be able to support each other."
I love that opening line! Thank you!
curious to hear how it goes!
I have a couple of networking events coming up in September *cross fingers*
I'm 100% an extrovert but I have a tons of friends who are introverts so I have seen them struggle a bit with this alsoA few things I think that help: - when you go to these networking events, get there at the starting time and strike up a convo with the organisers/volunteers and anyone who has had to get there earlier to prep, but please do not come anytime earlier, it's very stressful for hosts to have people coming before the start time. - get in line in the bar to grab a drink (if you don't drink alcohol, grab a water/ a juice etc), and find the other person who is alone either in front of you or behind (there's always someone who is also alone) and talk to them- if you go to a panel or so, sit at the front, so you can go strike up a convo with your panellists at the end more easily and chances that there are other people who want to talk to them will also be high. You will eventually find yourself in a small group of other people with whom you can carry on a convo- this will be a bit more jarring for you I think but after trying the above, try to break into a group already formed - usually it is better to do it with a group of people who just met and started talking than a group of friends/colleagues who came together - and lastly take a look at this thread luck you got this :)
Thanks, Lynna! I've done the first 2 steps, it's after, when people are already in groups and seem to know each other (creating a story in my head, I don't always know this for a fact) that's gets me all, ok time to leave! Lol. Thanks for that thread, I'll have a look.
Approach them and say “hi can i join in” if it is a group of women you can compliment on a piece of clothing or accessories!
Great idea!
Hi, Roxy! JUST GO. You'll be so glad you did. That's what I have to force myself to do... I really do not want to go to networking events they are so unnatural for me. But the more you do it the less overwhelming it will be. I usually come out with at least one good conversation and remind myself it was worth it. Wish I could go with you and wingwoman! (is finding a wingperson an option? or a really cute dog 😃.) I can usually strike a random convo by complimenting someone's clothes or bag or style. Just some ideas!
I wish I could bring my dog! I have an 8lbs bichon and she's a great conversation starter! Lol. I'm a fairly good conversationalist I'd say, but 1:1, so these big groups are unnerving. I wish you could too, it's an event in Vancouver for women leaders. I believe it's the first one by this group but if it grows, they could potentially take it global the way, has anyone told you you look like Nina Dobrev?!
As an introvert, I don't network if I can help it. I like 1:1 or small groups ok, but my batteries run low quickly due to a medical disability. What I do is get interested in things around me I find interesting. Usually there happens to be insane crossovers in life. Once I managed to connect a woman in CA to a woman in SA who are both life coaches in the spirituality field and knew of one another but hadn't met, because I had written some content for one, and then taken a free dance class she was also giving. The other I'd met in a similar way, but all of this was just a few years before remote went (really) big. It's really about maintaining authenticity and being open for opportunities at the same time, at the right time. It's not about using other people or being demanding. It's about genuinely vibing with someone, something, or a whole industry that interests you. In this way, your willingness to open up and authenticity mirror one another, so just be open to what you really *are* interested in, whether it be fluffy puppies or coding.
I agree, which was why I wasn't into networking before; it always felt fake and forced. I see now it's really about meeting the right people, and being the right person to meet, and then share interests and stories.
I also look out for signs that the organizers have designed the event for inclusivity and fostering 1:1 connections. When I've run events in the past, this usually meant designing quiet corners for people to chill when they feel overwhelmed or facilitating panels and conversations to include written activities or solo time. I do it because I'm an ambivert that needs the variety to thrive and process!To prescreen a networking event for inclusive(? or maybe a better explanation is diverse needs? ) design, I'll look at who's showing up or who's hosting, and the attendee lineup if it's available. Having an agenda is bonus points - especially if they include buffer time or intermissions for people to catch a break - this includes networking sessions that don't have a speaker component. Having a greeter or host that can also answer questions for safe quiet spots are great too, but if there isn't I'll make sure I know where the bathroom is so I know where to go if I need a breather. Also, if the networking event is too much, I just bow out - nothing is stopping you from leaving early! Also, pre-event I spend some time thinking how I want to answer the inevitable question of who I am and why I'm there. Being prepared helps cut some of the stress from having to think on the spot.
All great pointers! I think it depends on the event and how big or intimate it's going to be. I'll keep these in mind. Thanks, Katie!
I'm an introvert myself, these are the things I do to make attending events more comfortable or at least worthwhile:
How insightful, thanks for sharing!